VK Pandian terms ECI action against top cops as ‘unfortunate’

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Bhubaneswar, May 29 (IANS) V.K. Pandian, former bureaucrat and close aide of Odisha Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik, on Wednesday termed the Election Commission’s action against two senior IPS officers, D.S. Kutey and Ashish Kumar Singh, as “unfortunate”.

On Tuesday, ADGP D.S. Kutey, the Special Secretary to the Chief Minister, was suspended by the ECI for unduly interfering in the conduct of elections in the state.

The ECI also asked the director of AIIMS Bhubaneswar to constitute a special medical board to conduct a health check-up of IGP Ashish Kumar Singh, in charge of the Chief Minister’s security, who has been on medical leave since May 4, 2024.

“It’s very unfortunate that the ECI has taken action against certain officers working in the Chief Minister’s office. The two officers in question are both outstanding officers. Both played key roles in controlling Maoist trouble in Odisha by risking their lives, be it in Gajapati, or Malkangiri. They have been awarded by the highest authorities in the country for their commitment, dedication, and sacrifice,” Pandian said.

“This is very unfortunate and as per the design of the BJP, which can’t digest its imminent defeat in the hands of the BJD. It can’t stand against the popularity of CM Naveen Patnaik and his sway over the people of Odisha,” he added.

He also accused the ECI of taking action against the two officers at the behest of local BJP leaders.

Voting for the Assembly and Lok Sabha elections is being held simultaneously in Odisha in four phases from May 13 to June 1.



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