SC Dismisses Plea Challenging Appointment of MV Rao as Acting DGP

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The Supreme Court dismissed the PIL filed by a social activist challenging the appointment of MV Rao as Acting DGP in Jharkhand. The PIL alleged that this appointment is a violation of the Prakash Singh case.

Petitioner’s Submissions

The PIL in question has been filed on behalf of Prahlad Narayan Singh who is a social activist. Adv. Sanchit Garga filed this on his behalf while Senior Advocate R. Venkataramani presented the case. 

He challenged the appointment of DGP Rao on the grounds of the criteria of seniority. He asserted that this appointment is a disregard for the Supreme Court’s previous orders.

He has submitted that this act of the State to appoint Rao over other senior officers demonstrates that the removal of the earlier DGP tainted by political and whimsical motives. He added that “a good officer has been made a victim of political vendetta.” 

He mentioned how Rao is fourth in seniority when one looks at the Jharkhand-cadre IPS officer. It was added that Rao was also the incumbent Director-General of Fire Services and Home Guard at the time of his appointment.

The petitioner relies on the law laid down by the Supreme Court in Prakash Singh v UOI. He alleges that by way of this appointment the State and the Union Public Service Commission violated the order of this Court.

To assert the locus standi of the petitioner his Counsel stated that he is an aspirant and resident of the state of Jharkhand and Article 32 allows him to approach the Court.

Ground of Challenge

Senior Advocates Fali S Nariman and Neeraj Kishan Kaul represented the State of Jharkhand. The challenged this PIL because this was a matter of service and the Court cannot interfere. 

Sr. Adv. Kaul referred to this PIL as proxy litigation.

Petitioner’s Prayer

The Petitioner pleads before the Court to issue adequate directions to the State Government directing them to adhere to the law laid down in the Prakash Singh v UOI case. 

Court’s Decision

The bench concurred with the argument put forth by the respondents. The CJI addressed the petitioner’s Counsel and informed him that a PIL cannot be filed if the petitioner is concerned with the matter. He was not inclined to pay heed to Counsel’s argument about the right under Article 32.

The CJI stated that PIL is for approaching the Court seeking reformations in “public cause”. However, this case is a service matter and not within the ambit of PIL. Hence, the Prakash Singh case cannot be equated with this present petition.

The three-judge bench on Supreme Court head by CJI SA Bobde dismissed this matter.


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