Akhilesh defends IAS official's suspension

Written by: IANS
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Akhilesh Yadav
Lucknow, August 1: The Uttar Pradesh government on Thursday firmed up its stand on the suspension of IAS officer Durga Shakti Nagpal, with Chief Minister Akhilesh Yadav saying that the administration "is within its right to suspend any errant official".

Talking to reporters after a cabinet meeting, Yadav said a unilateral decision of the suspended officer could have led to communal trouble and government would in no way tolerate any such action that risks communal harmony in the state.

"The government is within its right to suspend any errant official and we have done so in accordance to laid down norms," he said.

He rubbished charges that Nagpal was suspended under the pressure of the sand mining mafia.

There was nothing in the matter that is even distantly related to illegal mining, the chief minister said while pointing out that in the past too, action had been taken by the government against all those involved in illegal mining.

Indian Administrative Service (IAS) officer Durga Shakti Nagpal, who took on the sand mining mafia in Greater Noida (Gautam Budh Nagar), was suspended on July 28. The UP government has, however, cited a different reason for her suspension. It said she was suspended for ordering demolition of a wall of a religious place in Noida.

On media reports that the district magistrate of Noida, in his report, had told the state government that the suspended official did not order demolition, Akhilesh Yadav said one should look into other reports too.

"One has to look into the reports in totality. The government has done the right thing after studying various ground reports," he said.

The chief minister also vent his anger at the lobbying by the IAS association in favour of the suspended official and reminded how the IAS officials were not even able to speak during the times of his predecessor Mayawati.

"Everyone knows how officials were gagged during the BSP regime, but we believe in openness and democracy," he added.

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