A bench headed by Chief Justice D.Y. Chandrachud declined to consider Nagaland government’s plea that the Union Public Service Commission (UPSC) should be asked to relax the 30 years’ service criteria rule to 25 years for the empanelment of IPS officers.
The bench, also comprising Justices V. Ramasubramanian and J.B. Pardiwala, noted that Sharma has already been appointed and added: “We are not issuing directions mandating the UPSC to relax the eligibility criteria from 30 years to 25 years.”
The apex court directed the state government to pass an order within one week on the appointment of Sharma as the Director General of Police.
The state government argued that it is facing difficulties in finding three senior IPS officers of 30 years of experience in small states like Nagaland for the purpose of empanelment by the UPSC.
In the procedure of DGP selection, the UPSC, state government, and other stakeholders prepare a list of three senior police officers and the state can appoint any one of them as the DGP.
During the hearing, the bench said if relaxation in the eligibility criteria were to be allowed, then it will lead into a scenario where an officer junior by five years can become the DGP of a state.
It said the UPSC and the Ministry of Home Affairs can decide the issues associated with the relaxation of 30 years’ service criteria into 25 years for IPS officers.
The bench was hearing a plea by the Nagaland Law Students Federation, seeking a direction to recall the order granting extension to Nagaland DGP T.J. Longkumer, a 1991 batch IPS officer, after his superannuation. Longkumer resigned earlier this month.