New Delhi, Jul 21: Facing the odd situation of an IAS officer being suspended by two authorities, the Union Home Ministry has asked the Delhi government to withdraw its order suspending Rajender Kumar, principal secretary to Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal, saying it has no power to do it.
The Home Ministry, however, made it clear that its own order suspending the 1989 batch IAS officer will continue. Kumar was arrested by the CBI on July 4 in an alleged corruption case and subsequently the Home Ministry has issued a deemed suspension order as he was in police custody for more than 48 hours.
The Delhi government has also issued deemed suspension order under the signature of Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal. A Home Ministry official said there is no enabling provision under the Service Law Jurisprudence for existence of two suspension orders for one and the same cause of action.
"The existence of two suspension orders is likely to be used by the delinquent officer to his advantage in any litigation or proceedings that might ensue. "Therefore, the Delhi government has been advised to withdraw the suspension order issued by the Chief Minister in respect of Rajender Kumar," the official said adding "the MHA suspension order will continue".
The Home Ministry is the disciplinary authority in respect of IAS and IPS officers belonging to Arunachal Pradesh-Goa-Mizoram-Union Territories (AGMUT) cadre.
"Therefore, the Home Ministry can only place officers of AGMUT cadre under suspension. The Delhi government, being a Union Territory, does not have jurisdiction to initiate disciplinary proceedings against the officers of AGMUT cadre," the officer said.