New Delhi: Congress leader P Chidambaram on Friday questioned the Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA)’s decision to grant an extension to Delhi Police Commissioner Amulya Patnaik, as the ministry’s move came despite the incident outside the Jamia Millia Islamia (JMI) University on Thursday in which a 17-year-old minor opened fire at a group of anti-Citizenship Amendment Act (CAA) protesters, injuring a student. Also Read - Day After Jamia Shooting, Delhi Police Launches Major Crackdown on Protesters at ITO
Patnaik was earlier scheduled to retire today, i.e January 31. However, he was granted a month’s extension by the Election Commission (EC) on the recommendation of the MHA, yesterday, in the view of the upcoming Delhi Assembly Election on February 8. Also Read - Jamia Firing: Delhi Police Responds to Criticism, Says 'Didn't Have Time to React'
Chidambaram, a former Union Home Minister himself, tweeted: “The Police Commissioner of Delhi gets an extension on the day there is a shooting in the presence of a substantial police force. Incomprehensible and reprehensible.” Also Read - Jamia Firing: Thousands of Protesters Hit Streets as Man Chanting 'Ye Lo Azadi' Opens Fire at Student
“One has got an extension, but who has been suspended for the deplorable shooting yesterday?,” Chidambaram, also a former Union Finance Minister questioned.
Patnaik was appointed the Delhi Police Commissioner on January 17, 2017, succeeding Alok Verma, who was appointed as the director of the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI). An officer of the 1985 AGMUT cadre, his role has come under immense scrutiny over the last month in the wake of Delhi Police’s action on the JMI campus last month and inaction earlier this month, in the Jawaharlal Nehru University (JNU) violence case.
In fact, the police came under severe flak for Thursday’s incident as well as the personnel stood as ‘mute spectators’ even as the shooter opened fire outside the university. Defending itself, the police said that ‘it too was taken by surprise and didn’t have time to react.’