Lokayukta orders registration of PE case against deputy CM

Correspondent KOHIMA, FEB 20 (NPN) | Publish Date: 2/20/2020 12:22:40 PM IST

Following a complaint lodged by a former student leader against deputy chief minister, Y. Patton for his  alleged “misdeeds, abuse of power and maladministration in the police/home department”, the Nagaland Lokayukta justice Uma Nath Singh has ordered registration of a preliminary enquiry (PE) case in this regard.

“As the complaint is procedurally in order, the law has to take its course. Thus, I need to proceed as per provisions of Section 8(1)(a); Sec. 10, Sec. 11 and Sec. 12 of the Nagaland Lokayukta Act (NLA) 2017 by passing appropriate order(s),” Singh stated in its order dated February 20, 2020.

Since the allegations was related to a high public functionary, Singh stated that “before undertaking an exercise of investigation, which is governed by the provisions of Cr.Pc., which, if ordered immediately without complete verification of facts as alleged in the complaint, may have a cascade effect on the existence of state government.”

In this regard, the Lokayukta directed the coordinating officer/inspector of Nagaland Lokayukta police establishment to register a PE case, to be conducted by the higher authority/functionary, namely the chief minister Nagaland, who shall submit his report on an affidavit before the next date of hearing.

It also directed deputy CM Y. Patton to file his reply to the allegations on an affidavit.

Citing several instances, the complainant, one Vicca S. Aye in an affidavit submitted to the Lokayukta alleged that Patton, in his speech at a recent programme, had “proposed and offered to the candidates who qualify the written exams of NPSC to approach him for help at the interview stage”. 

Aye said that Patton, having been the Home minister for almost seven years, with a short break in between, was allegedly involved in “rampant abuse of administrative discretion and favouritism and also interference in normal administrative functioning of the police department,” such as on appointment issue.

Aye said it was evident that Patton, during the recently concluded Assembly session, had squarely blamed the SPs and Commandants for making almost 1135 appointments in the department during 2018-19, without advertisement except for 206 constables and 35ASI/SI.

Meanwhile, the complainant urged the Lokayukta to consider handing over the case to the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) or someone with impeccable credentials, to avoid any kind of influence during the course of investigation.

Further, the Lokayukta under Sec. 35 of the NLA 2017, directed that the Nagaland Police and the Commissioner of police Dimapur in particular, to ensure protection of the complainant, who falls in the category of “whistle blower”, failing which necessary legal consequences shall follow against the authority responsible for such protection.

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