Kozhikode: Amid the tension and political violence in Kozhikode, Kannur and Palakkad districts over the Sabarimala row, the post of the ADGP of north zone has been vacant for the last 10 months.
New appointment has not been made since the retirement of former ADGP in charge Rajesh Diwan. Currently, south zone ADGP Anilkanth IPS has the responsibility of north zone also. But he is unable to efficiently handle the issues and provide dedicated attention to north zone.
The hartal called by Sabarimala Karma Samiti on January 2 witnessed a widespread violence in Kozhikode, Kannur and Palakkad districts like a planned riot. Many police personnel were injured in the violence as district police chiefs couldn’t control the situation. In Kozhikode alone, 16 police personnel were injured. Many shops were damaged as hartal supporters behaved wickedly in the city.
Following the hartal, criticisms were raised against district police chiefs. The criticisms by the senior members of the force pointed that the reason behind the failure of police action during hartal was the absence of an ADGP. Thus, a strong demand to appoint a new ADGP for north zone has been raised.
Police couldn’t sufficiently tackle the violence that erupted in these districts and many times went out of control. As the incident triggered controversy, the department is heading for a huge shuffle in the force.
Earlier, CPM state secretary Kodiyeri Balakrishnan had stated that RSS sympathisers in police force had supported the violence. Allegation raised against the force pointed out that directions of higher officers in the force were undervalued at the bottom of the hierarchy. This has triggered a total shuffle in the force.
Though chiefs of police have limitations in interfering in district level affairs, ADGP can give specific directions in law and order matters. However, the absence of ADGP doesn’t permit this.