Arun Kumar Sinha has been re-employed on a contract basis. (FILE)
The Special Protection Group Director was re-employed by the Centre on Tuesday for one year on a contract basis, just a day before he was to retire.
According to an order issued by the Department of Personnel and Training (DoPT) on Tuesday, Arun Kumar Sinha (a 1987 batch IPS officer) was re-employed as Director, SPG for one year.
"This was done according to rules. An IPS can only be given an extension for six months and if one needs to be given an extension beyond that, then the SPG rules need to be amended. So to bypass that Mr Sinha was re-employed on a contractual basis," explained a senior home ministry official.
"The Appointment Committee of the Cabinet has approved the re-employment of Mr Sinha on a contract basis for a period of one year beyond the date of his superannuation (May 31) or until further orders, whichever is earlier," stated the DoPT order.
Earlier last week, the Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA) notified a fresh set of rules for the SPG empowering the Centre to frame standard operating procedures (SOPs) to be followed by the state Governments, Army, local and civic authority to aid the SPG in performing its duties.
The rules also provide that the IPS officer appointed to the post of Director should not be less than the Additional Director General (ADG) rank. The latest decision assumes significance in the backdrop of the fact that on several occasions SPG was headed by an Inspector General rank officer and ADG rank officer as no specific rule was notified.
As per the MHA officials, the security of Prime Minister Narendra Modi was breached many a time recently in many states and that's why rules have been changed by the government.
"Ahead of 2024 Lok Sabha elections, these changes are crucial," stated an official adding that PM would be visiting the entire country for the election campaign and that includes opposition-ruled states like Punjab, West Bengal, Karnataka, Andhra Pradesh and many more," they said.