The Election Commission has ordered the transfer of Tamil Nadu's Inspector General, South Zone S Murugan to a non-election post with immediate effect. The Election Commission also directed the state government to send a list of officers for appointment as IG, South Zone in place of Murugan, official sources said.
Based on the inputs of the special police observer, the Commission has ordered the transfer of various ACPs and DSPs in poll-bound Tamil Nadu with a direction to attach them with the DGP, Headquarters. It has also directed the Tamil Nadu government to not assign these officers with any election-related duty.
Some of the transferred officials are R Anbarasan, Central Crime Branch, Greater Chennai Police, M Velumurgan, Central Crime Branch, Greater Chennai Police and MSM Valawan, Economic Offences Wing, Headquarters, Chennai.
Among those who have been transferred include officer S Murugan, who is being investigated in a sexual harassment case filed by a woman SP. In August 2018, she accused S Murugan IPS, the then Joint Director in the Directorate of Vigilance and Anti-Corruption (DVAC), of sexually harassing her. While an Internal Committee was formed under the leadership of Lakshmi Prasad, a DGP-level officer, the survivor was forced to approach the Madras High Court where she alleged that the chairman of the committee and others were favouring the perpetrator. In what was a highly unusual move, the High Court transferred the investigation to Telangana police. However, this was stayed by the Supreme Court in September 2019.
The Election Commission had earlier in March directed the Chief Secretary to suspend former Chengalpattu Superintendent of Police D Kannan. The SP had allegedly physically stopped a woman IPS officer from filing the complaint a sexual harassment complaint against Special Director General of Police (DGP).
The Tamil Nadu Assembly polls are scheduled to be held on April 6 and the results will be declared on May 2.