Minister Anil Vij had shouted ‘get out’ but officer Sangeeta Kalia stood her ground and paid the price
GN Staff | November 28, 2015
Bureaucrats are favourite punching bags for politicians and Haryana seems to be outdoing other states. A day after she had a public spat with a minister an IPS officer has been shunted out in Haryana. The Haryana government today transferred Fatehabad superintendent of police Sangeeta Kalia on the complaint of state health minister Anil Vij, following yesterday’s verbal spat between the two at the district grievances committee meeting.
Haryana Health Minister Anil Vij had walked out in a huff after the district police chief had defied his order to leave the meeting in Fatehabad yesterday. The minister had used the words “get out”.
The confrontation took place when the minister questioned Kalia on the alleged illegal sale of liquor in villages. Vij reportedly asked the SP what the police were doing about multiple liquor sale points in villages within the Ratia sub-division. The officer explained the police’s responsibility and mentioned that 2,500 cases had been registered under the Excise Act in the past 10 months, “which was a record”.
The reply, however, did not satisfy the minister. As the exchange of words continued, the minister got agitated and asked the SP to “get out” of the meeting. The police officer refused to leave as she felt “she was not in the wrong”, and objected to the minister’s conduct.
Vij again asked the officer to leave, but she stood her ground. The officer’s response angered the minister and he immediately walked out.
While Vij spoke to Haryana chief minister ML Khattar about the incident, the SP had sent her report to Haryana DGP Yash Pal Singal.
The incident drew sharp reactions on social media, with several coming out in support of Kalia, saying the minister should have exercised restraint.
Once the meeting was over, district administration and police officials, barring the DC and the SP, met again and condemned the minister’s conduct.
In a communication to the chief minister, addressed through the chief secretary they alleged that Vij made “indecent” remarks that the police were getting illicit liquor sold.
“When the SP politely denied any police role in the matter, the minister got angry and humiliated Kalia by asking her to get out… The incident has lowered the morale of the police and the district administration officials… The government’s image has taken a hit and the Beti Bachao Beti Padhao campaign is bound to suffer,” the letter mentioned, seeking “suitable action against the minister”.
The spat drew sharp reactions from various quarters, with the opposition slamming Vij over his comments to a woman officer, while chairman of national commission for scheduled castes P L Punia demanded that the minister should be sacked.
Kalia has been posted as commandant, 4th India Reserve Battalion (IRB), Manesar. She has been succeeded by Om Prakash, who last posted as commandant, 3rd IRB, Sunaria.
Sangeeta Kalia’s has been an inspiration to many. Her father Dharam Pal was a painter in the Fatehabad police. She aspired to be like the Kavita Chaudhary, who played the role of an IPS officer in the popular TV serial UDAAN in the 90s.
It was in 2010 when Dharam Pal took retirement from the Fatehabad police and in the same time his daughter joined the Haryana police as an IPS officer.
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