Punjab’s political parties are up in arms against Centre’s move to merge Chandigarhcadre deputy superintendents of police (DSPs) with the DANIPS cadre as they see it as an attempt to undermine state’s right over Chandigarh which remains a Union Territory (UT).
While the Chief Minister (CM) Amarinder Singh on Tuesday said he would take up the issue with the Prime Minister (PM) Narendra Modi during his meeting with the PM on Thursday, all other main political parties including the Congress, Aam Aadmi Party and the Shiromani Akali Dal have termed the move as unacceptable.
Speaking to reporters, the CM said his government was not in agreement with the Union government on the issue of the recent Central notification on Chandigarh UT cadre allocation.
Amarinder said he had already written to the PM requesting him to reconsider the notification. He further said he would again take up the issue with the PM during their meeting in Delhi on Thursday.
“We will not accept it (the notification). The 60:40 ratio (on postings of Punjab and Haryana officials in Chandigarh), as decided upon in 1966 at the time of division of Punjab and Haryana must not be disturbed,” the CM stressed.
Besides ruling Congress, other political parties including an ally in the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) led National Democratic Alliance (NDA) government at the Centre, the SAD have flayed the move.
The Punjab unit of the Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) said the September 25 notification was in gross violation of the letter and spirit of the Punjab Reorganization Act, 1966.
In a letter to Union home minister Rajnath Singh, AAP legislator Kanwar Sandhu urged him to withdraw the notification which could affect not only the morale of the officer cadre of the UT Police but also add to the “perceived sense of discrimination towards the State of Punjab.”
While a section of SAD have criticised the BJP for the Centre’s move, senior Akali Dal leader Prem Singh Chandumajra on Monday asked CM Amarinder to convene a special session of the Vidhan Sabha over Centre’s notification “placing Chandigarh’s administrative control entirely with the UT cadre”.
He claimed that this amounted to making Chandigarh permanently a UT, thereby adversely affecting the state’s claim over it.
Senior congress leader and cabinet minister, Sukhjinder Singh Randhawa said as the notification lowers the share of Punjab in the matter of postings of officers in the Chandigarh Administration, the alliance partner of the BJP led government, SAD owes an explanation to the people of Punjab on this issue of grave sensitivity.
As per the Centre government notification, the Chandigarh cadre has been merged with the DANIPS cadre and the cadre has been renamed as the National Capital of Delhi, Andaman and Nicobar Islands, Lakshadweep, Daman and Diu, Dadra and Nagar Haveli and Chandigarh (Police Services) Rules 2018. This was done to improve the working of Chandigarh Police.