statesman news service
NEW DELHI, 3 AUG: Congress president Sonia Gandhi today came out in support of suspended UP IAS officer Durga Shakti Nagpal. In her capacity as chairperson of the National Advisory Council, Ms Gandhi wrote to Prime Minister, asking him to “ensure that the officer is not unfairly treated”.
Her letter said the officer was “hastily suspended for unsubstantiated reasons. There is widespread concern because she was seen to be standing up to vested interests engaging in illegal activity".
“This instance has highlighted the need to assess whether there are adequate safeguards in place to protect executive functionaries working beyond the average call of duty to uphold the rule of law…I know some good beginnings have been made towards administrative reforms, but the issues that have come to be profiled in Ms Nagpal&’s case need focus,” Mrs Gandhi’s letter said.
The young officer was shunted out by the Uttar Pradesh government for ordering the demolition of a mosque wall. Her supporters, however, feel she was punished for taking on the state&’s powerful sand mafia.
Ms Gandhi&’s letter assumes significance since it is an indictment of a key ally, the Samajwadi Party. UP chief minister and SP chief’s son Akhilesh Yadav has firmly stood by the decision to suspend her on grounds that her actions threatened communal harmony.