Friday, May 9, 2014

SC restrains Archana Ramasundaram, first woman CBI additional director, from discharging her duties

A day after Archana Ramasundaram became the first woman additional director in CBI, the Supreme Court restrained her from functioning in the post. 

The SC said prima facie there is a strong view that her selection was not done as per the procedure laid down and that she appeared to be a government choice, which was not approved by the selection committee. 

In a twist to the tug-of-war between the Centre and Tamil Nadu over Archana Ramasundaram, the state government had on Thursday suspended the IPS officer hours after she took charge as the additional director in CBI. 

Sources said Tamil Nadu chief secretary Mohan Verghese Chungath sent out Ramasundaram's suspension order late on Thursday evening as the 1980-batch officer didn't inform the state government about her new role in the CBI. Explaining the state government's stand, a senior official said, "Archana Ramasundaram has deserted from her last position as the chairman of the Tamil Nadu Uniformed Services Recruitment Board." 

The official said Ramasundaram sent her formal letter to the TN chief secretary only on Thursday afternoon, saying that she has joined as the CBI additional director. 

In a formal letter sent to the Centre, Chungath said, "The IPS officer should not be allowed to take charge in the new position. Even if she has already taken charge, she should be relieved immediately and sent to her headquarters (Tamil Nadu)." 

However, the All India Services manual says that the Centre can depute an officer in extraordinary circumstances in which there is concurrence of the officer and the Centre even if the state government is not in agreement.

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