Hyderabad: The latest circular by the Centre states that the Governor will take a final call on all matters pertaining to the law and order machinery including postings of officers.
According to Telangana Chief Minister K. Chandrasekhar Rao, these instructions will go against the principles of independence of the state government in matters of law and order, which as per the statute, is vested with state government.
Section 8 of the AP Reorganisation Act states: “The responsibility of the Governor shall extend to matters such as law and order, internal security and security of vital installations and management and allocation of government buildings in the common capital area. In discharge of the functions, the Governor shall, after consulting the Council of Ministers of the state of Telangana, exercise his individual judgment as to the action to be taken. If any question arises whether any matter is or is not a matter as respects which the governor is under this sub-section required to act in the exercise of his individual judgment, the decision of the Governor in his discretion shall be final, and the validity of anything done by the Governor shall not be called in question on the ground that he ought or ought not to have acted in exercise of his individual judgement.”
For the Governor to exercise these special powers, the Centre has already appointed two advisers (A.P.V.N. Sharma and A.K. Mohanty) to assist him.
The Circular (No. 12012/05/2014-SR) sent by the joint secretary to Mr Rajeev Sharma, chief secretary to the Telangana government, is as follows:
Governor to get reports on law and order in city
“In order to ensure that the provisions regarding the special responsibility of the Governor is implemented smoothly vis-a-vis the Government of Telangana, the following amendments to the state business transaction rules are proposed:
(1) The Governor shall have power to call for any record or information or decision of the Council of Ministers or any authority relating to the responsibilities envisaged under Section 8 of the AP Reorganisation Act, 2014. The Commissioners of Police and the SP of Ranga Reddy district shall furnish periodical reports of law and order to the Governor in addition to special reports on all grave and specially grave crimes in the common capital area.
(2) The Governor shall have the power to issue a direction in accordance with the provisions of law or regulation.
(3) The Governor will be assisted by adviser/s appointed by the government of India. The Governor shall allot the responsibilities between the advisors as deemed fit from time to time.
(4) For the purposes of matters falling under law and order, internal security and security of vital installations as well as the two Police Commissionerates currently operating in the common capital area i.e. the Hyderabad and the Cyberabad and commissionerates, and for the district of Ranga Reddy, the home secretary of the state of Telangana shall brief the Governor on all matters mentioned above as well as those that have special significance and the Governor may convey his views which shall be placed before the appropriate authority. Governor’s advice shall prevail.
(5) A special cell headed by an officer not below the rank of inspector general in both the commissionerates and with a senior officer in the office of SP, Ranga Reddy, shall be set up to deal with hate crimes and crimes related to extortion or any other specified crime and ensure speedy trial; wide publicity would be given to the contact numbers of the officers of this cell so as to enable citizens to contact them directly.
(6) A special cell to deal with issues concerning internal security and security of vital installations with a senior officer in-charge shall be set up in both the commissionerates and in the office of SP, Ranga Reddy.
The special cell shall also identify sensitive establishments/institutions and report to the Governor through the government of Telangana on the adequacy or otherwise of the security arrangements of the said establishment/installation. The cell shall undertake a review of the existing security provided by the Special Protection Force (SPF), Central Industrial Security Force (CISF) etc. and suggest additional measures, if considered necessary to ensure fool proof security of the notified installations. The Governor may suggest measures to strengthen the security arrangements based on the information made available and the threat perceptions, which shall be binding. A nodal officer from the senior management cadre shall be appointed in all the notified vital installations, who shall be responsible for furnishing periodical review reports on the security status of the installation and for implementation of the recommendations of the special cell.
Powers to order Telangana for probe
(7) A police service board comprising DGP Telangana and the Commissioner of Police, Hyderabad and Cyberabad should be set up exclusively for the state of Telangana in context of law and order administration of the common capital area of Hyderabad to handle the transfer and postings of all officers including DCPs, ACPs and SHOs.
The police force of Hydera-bad and Cyberabad commissionerates shall be a joint force comprising of elements from Andhra and Telangana on fair share basis in higher supervisory posts i.e. Deputy Commissio-ners of Police, Addl Com-missioners of Police and Commissioners of Police. In case of officers drawn from residual state of AP, a Police Service Board on the lines of Telangana will propose a panel of names. The Gover-nor shall have the power to approve and suggest such changes as he deems fit as per his best judgment.
(8) In case the Governor considers it necessary in view of the situation, as per his best judgment, to requisition additional forces for deployment, he would ask the state government to examine this issue and communicate the decision to the Governor. This decision will be subject to review under Section 8 of the Act and the Governor’s decision shall be final after such review.
(9) The Governor can call for a report or assessment from the state government of Telangana on any acts of omission and commission by any official and direct the government to conduct an enquiry and take appropriate action as per law.
Authority to protect property rights
(10) In case of exigencies, the Governor can call for a re-port or assessment from the state government of Telangana upon which he can ask the state government specifically for reallocation of staff on a temporary basis in case of any contingency.
(11) The management and allocation of buildings to all the departments of both the successor states shall be decided by the Governor on the recommendations of the Commi-ttee of Senior Officers constituted for the purpose keeping in view the requirement and availability of accommodation. The decision of the Governor shall be final.
(13) To ensure the safety of property of the common capital of Hyderabad, the collectors of Hyderabad and Ranga Reddy districts as well as the commissioner of GHMC shall set up grievance cells for the redressal of grievances and affected parties shall have the right to represent themselves. The Governor can issue necessary directions to the officials of the state government of Telangana for the protection of the property rights of the aggrieved.