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Rajasthan: ML Lather appointed as DGP

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Acting DGP and a 1987 batch IPS officer, Mohan Lal Lather, will be the new DGP of Rajasthan. Rajasthan Chief Minister Ashok Gehlot made an announcement in this regard late on Tuesday night.

ML Lather was chosen as the DGP after the Union Public Service Commission (UPSC) approved a panel of three names. Lather, superseded the senior-most officer Rajiv Dasot, who is DGP (jails) and AK Mishra, who is on a central deputation.

Lather has served as a superintendent of police in five districts and will be the DGP till 2022. Lather has served as Inspector general of Jaipur range and also as DGP (Crime) and was awarded President’s medal. The elevation of Lather would mean that Dasot will never be able to become DGP and so would be BL Soni, who is DGP anti-corruption. Both will retire even before lather retires.

Seniority overlooked by Rajasthan CM

Chief Minister Ashok Gehlot has not given importance to seniority and made Lather the DGP to appease the Jat community. Gehlot had to face the wrath of the bureaucracy when he appointed a much junior IAS Niranjan Arya as the chief secretary to replace Rajeeva Swarup.

Niranjan Arya, a Dalit, superseded 10 seniors and was made the chief secretary. The bureaucracy and the police have resented these moves of Gehlot to play the caste card in appointments for the top spots. Dasot is an officer with a clean track record, but Dasot, a Jain, had no lobby to back him.

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Lather was made the acting DGP after Bhupendra Yadav, the then DGP opted for voluntary retirement from service. Yadav was then made the chairman of the Rajasthan Public Service Commission (RPSC).

CM faces criticism over appointment of Sangeeta Arya

In fact, Ashok Gehlot invited the wrath of the party workers when he appointed Dr Sangeeta Arya, the wife of chief secretary Niranjan Arya, as a member of the Rajasthan Public Service Commission along with Dr Jaswant Bhati. Bhati does not even belong to Rajasthan and he comes from Haryana and was once close to the Jat patriarch Devi Lal and an active Janta Dal worker.

Dr Sangeeta Arya had contested the last Vidhan Sabha election and lost poorly. Yet, she was made a member of the RPSC and now both husband and wife are occupying coveted positions in the government. This has attracted criticism for Ashok Gehlot, both within and outside the government.

 

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