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Top cops differ on protest permits | Published: 21st February 2020 | Posted Date: Friday 21st February 2020 05:20 PM

Hyderabad: The ‘politics’ over granting or rejecting permission for holding anti-Citizenship Amendment Act (CAA) protests by the Hyderabad city police — which has come under fire from various quarters over the last couple of months — has stirred up a controversy within the top brass of the police force.

There have been serious disagreements over the manner in which permissions were granted or rejected to various organisations to hold anti-CAA rallies, which reportedly led to heated exchanges between the top brass over the past one month.

An upset senior IPS officer, presently an Additional Commissioner of Police in Hyderabad city police has abruptly sought a transfer from his present post. Another senior IPS officer, who was holding full additional charge of south zone — the epicentre of anti-CAA protests — was abruptly relieved of the charge.
Yesterday, the Telangana High Court was furious with Hyderabad city police for delaying taking decisions on a number of applications seeking permission for anti-CAA rallies, which forced the organisations to seek judicial intervention.

Irked at being flooded by cases seeking judicial intervention after police permission for public gatherings and protests had been denied, the court directed the DGP and the Principal Secretary (Home) to frame guidelines to accord permissions.

Informed sources told Deccan Chronicle that over the last couple of months, many organisations had approached the Hyderabad city police seeking permission to hold protests against the CAA.

But not all were granted permission. It is learnt that some organisations were made to wait for days without any word coming from the Hyderabad police, while others were denied permission.

Several organisations and even political parties such as the Congress have accused the Hyderabad city police of being biased in granting permissions for protests.

Sources said that there were serious disagreements within the force on who to grant or deny permission to.

It is learnt that Hyderabad Police Commissioner Anjani Kumar and Additional Commissioner of Police (law and order) D.S. Chauhan were reportedly “not on the same page” over the permissions.

Over the last one month, the lower rung officials, in the rank of ACPs and Inspectors, who were aware of the tussle among their higher-ups, were exercising caution when giving the ‘ground report’ to their superiors, based on which the top brass takes the final call of granting or rejecting permissions.

Sources said that with matters reaching boiling point, Mr Chauhan is understood to have requested the government to transfer him out immediately — which raised many an eyebrow in IPS circles. The matter is now with the Director General of Police M. Mahendar Reddy.

Even as all this was going on, Joint Commissioner of Police Avinash Mohanty, who was holding full additional charge of south zone for the last six months as the state government failed to appoint a full time DCP for the most sensitive zone in Hyderabad, was suddenly relieved of the charge. This has set tongues wagging within the Telangana police.

Strangely, in Mr Mohanty’s place, Ramagundam police commissioner V. Satyanarayana has been given full additional charge of south zone. He now runs south zone over the telephone from Ramagundam, some 200-odd kilometres from Hyderabad.

This has left many wondering why the additional charge was not given to any of the zonal DCPs working in Hyderabad itself.



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