A senior IPS officer, A B Venkateswara Rao, was in the middle of the ongoing fight between the Andhra Pradesh government and the Election Commission.

Former AP Intelligence chief who was shunted out by EC appointed as ACB chief
news Controversy Tuesday, April 23, 2019 - 08:23

The Andhra Pradesh government on Monday appointed Additional DGP A B Venkateswara Rao, who was at the centre of a row last month as Intelligence Director General of the state, as the chief of the state's Anti-Corruption Bureau (ACB). 

A Government Order (GO) was issued by Chief Secretary L V Subrahmanyam on Monday, which appointed Rao as the Director General of the ACB, replacing Debabrata Bagchi who was holding additional charge of the bureau.

On March 26, the Election Commission had ordered for the transfer of Rao and two other senior IPS officers, Kadapa SP Rahul Dev Sharma and Srikakulam SP Venkata Ratnam, which had triggered off a big row in the state.

While the EC did not mention the reason for the transfers in the order, the Telugu Desam Party (TDP) pointed out that it came days after a complaint filed by YSRCP on the issue.

On March 27, Chief Minister N Chandrababu Naidu wrote to the EC to reconsider its decision.

Later that same evening, then Chief Secretary Anil Chandra Punetha issued two Government Orders (GO). In the first GO, the two Superintendents of Police were transferred but the transfer of Venkateswara Rao was cancelled.

The state government also moved the High Court, but the HC sided with the EC and stated that its orders must be followed. 

Following this, in the first week of April, the EC shunted out Punetha for allegedly defying its order to transfer three top police officials.

The poll panel has appointed L.V. Subrahmanyam, an Indian Administrative Service (IAS) officer of 1983 batch, as the new Chief Secretary.

The EC directed that Punetha, who is due to retire next month, should not be given any election-related posting.


Read: Why the TDP government and the Chief Secretary in Andhra continue to spar post polls

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