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Harassed for visiting temple, Haryana IG demands regularisation of religious places on police premises

An IGP level officer Kumar claims the “existence of unauthorised/ unsanctioned” places of worship in police premises is a matter of record and very much in the knowledge of all concerned.  Alleging that he was “harassed” for visiting a temple on the premises of a police station in Ambala in 2021, a senior IPS officer of Haryana Y Puran Kumar has demanded regularisation of “unauthorised and unsanctioned” places of worship on police premises. According to official sources, there are temples, gurdwaras, dargah, mosques and mazaars at nearly 150 police premises, mainly police stations and police lines, in Haryana. Kumar raised the issue in a representation addressed to the Chief Secretary nearly a month ago. On its part, the office of DGP PK Agrawal has sent the representation to the Chief Secretary for “necessary action”. Kumar had joined as IGP Ambala range on July 1, 2020 but was transferred in April 2021. In a separate complaint, Kumar had stated that the disciplinary action had been initiated against him in the context of a place of worship when he was posted as the IGP in Ambala police range.

Now in his representation, Kumar said: “…(I) was harassed and discriminated for visiting a temple on the premises of a police station in Ambala, for which…(I) had to approach the HC. Even though the office of DGP Haryana collected all the requisite information but nothing has been done in furtherance of regulating the places of worship in police premises. Therefore, the entire exercise of collecting information now seems to be futile or just an exercise to cover up for the allegations of discrimination, impartially, etc. alleged by… (me) against the then DGP which is being continued by the incumbent DGP Haryana as it is extremely difficult to believe that the DGP and his office is not able to compile a consolidated proposal as said despite a lapse of more than 10 months since Feb 2021.”

An IGP level officer Kumar claims the “existence of unauthorised/ unsanctioned” places of worship in police premises is a matter of record and very much in the knowledge of all concerned. In his representation, Kumar said: “As per information provided by the SPIO (state public information officer) of the office of Director General of Police (DGP) Haryana, there are numerous places of worship existing in police premises in various police stations across the state of Haryana. Most of these places of worship exist without being sanctioned or permission from the competent authority and therefore could be termed as “unauthorised”. Despite collecting the requisite information in this regard by the office of DGP Haryana (since February 2021) no action has been taken thereafter to regularise the same by way of sending consolidated proposal to the Haryana government for getting ex-post facto sanction for the same.” According to the officer, as per his information no consolidated proposal has been sent to the state government to get ex-post facto sanction to regularise the “unauthorised/unsanctioned” places of worship.

Officer seeks audit of 150 places of worship

Meanwhile, Kumar has sought regular financial audit of the contributions and donations received at the places of worship located in the police premises in state. In a communication to the state police chief on Monday, the officer urged him to forward it to the Principal Accountant General, Haryana through the Chief Secretary. In the communication, Kumar said: “…the financial contributions/donations received at these places of worship should be deposited in the state exchequer and also regular financial audits should also be ought be conducted as per rules…it may kindly be verified whether contributions/ donations at these places of worship on police premises are deposited in the state exchequer and also whether regular financial audits of the same are being conducted by the competent authority and accordingly needful may kindly be considered to be taken in the interest of the state.”

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