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Suspended IPS officer Basant Rath quits, J&K govt denies receiving resignation

Last Updated on June 29, 2022 at 6:38 pm

Basant Rath, an IPS officer who has been placed on administrative leave, tweeted a copy of his resignation letter on his unverified Twitter account, but neither the Jammu and Kashmir government nor Director General of Police Dilbag Singh’s office have received it.

Rath, an IPS officer from the 2000 batch, may have simply intended to post a resignation letter on his unverified Twitter account, “KangriCarrier,” to float the notion of requesting voluntary retirement, according to senior officials in the Jammu and Kashmir administration.

Rath has been suspended since July 2020 for “repeated instances of gross misconduct and misbehaviour”. The Union Home Ministry had mentioned in his suspension letter that Rath’s base of operations during the suspension would be Jammu, and he would not be allowed to travel without first getting permission from the director general of the Jammu and Kashmir Police. Rath, who is about to complete his two-year suspension next month, took to his social media accounts to announce his resignation on June 25. He expressed his wish to enter into politics and run for office from Kashmir.

Rath addressed his resignation letter to Jammu and Kashmir Chief Secretary Arun Kumar Mehta and marked to Director General of Police Dilbag Singh and Commandant General Home Guard H K Lohia. He wrote that he wishes to resign from the Indian Police Service as he wants to join electoral politics in Jammu and Kashmir and Ladakh.

The IPS officer gained notoriety in 2018 after a public argument with the then-mayor of Srinagar, Junaid Mattu, who demanded an “examination of current traffic diversions” in the city. Rath was the inspector general of J&K Police (Traffic). Rath wrote on his social media handles that that traffic control in the city was not the jurisdiction of the mayor.

The Central government suspended Basant in July 2020 over his social media outburst about Dilbag Singh, the director general of the J&K police. Basant attempted to raise concerns about the DGP Singh’s personal holdings through a tweet. He further asserted that the DGP poses a threat to his life. He also had lodged a police case against him at Jammu’s Gandhi Nagar police station.

Talking to a news media outlet, he also expressed his wish to join BJP once his resignation letter gets accepted.