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IGP, SP issued notices by state information panel
As reported in Navhind Times, NT NETWORK Tuesday, June 3, 2008
MAPUSA The State information Commission has issued notices to the IGP, Mr Kishan Kumar and the superintendent of police (headquarters), Mr Allan Dâ€™sa on an appeal filed by the dismissed PSI, Mr Nerlon Albuquerque.
The dismissed PSI filed an appeal before the State Information Commission after his request to Mr Dâ€™sa who is the public information officer and the IGP who is the first appellate authority was turned down.
It may be recalled that Mr Nerlon was dismissed from service over the infamous Scarlette case based on an inquiry conducted by DySP, Mr Nilu Raut Desai wherein Mr Nerlon was indicted for improper investigations and treating the case as a mere suicide. Raising doubts over the authenticity and genuineness of the inquiry conducted against him without seeking his presence, Mr Nerlon had sent a notice to the SP (HQ) and IGP requesting them to furnish the inquiry report. His request was turned down.
When contacted Mr Nerlon said that not taking his statement during the course of inquiry and now by not providing him the inquiry report clearly speaks about the malicious motives of the concerned officers and added that it is obvious that the enquiry is conducted in a biased manner with the sole intention of dismissing him.
â€œIt seems that the IGP is trying to safeguard interests of certain persons by not allowing a fair enquiry in the matter. Why else did he dismiss me and scuttle the process of the enquiry?â€ Mr Nerlon questioned.
Reiterating his demand for a fair enquiry, Mr Nerlon stated that he wanted the enquiry to be conducted by an independent body given the fact that the police department would be pressurized under the influence of the IGP in conducting a biased enquiry.
Mr Nerlon further challenged the IGP to show any significant investigation conducted in the case after the investigation was taken over from him. "In spite of several requests, why did the superiors not permit me to register an offence and arrest the accused?" he asked.
The IGP allegedly has been pressurized by certain vested interests to dismiss me and I will not take this lightly,â€ Mr Nerlon added.
As reported in bombaynews.net on 06 June 2008:
Goa opens assembly committee meetings to public, media
Goa opens assembly committee meetings to public, media
The Goan media and public got a pleasant surprise here when they were allowed to sit through an assembly committee meeting, directly getting to hear from those in power.
'It was quite a surprising experience (to allow the public at a committee meeting). But there were few people present perhaps because they were not expecting it, or not aware,' said lawyer Avinash Bhosle, a corporator from Panaji and former student leader, who was present at the meeting.
A Goa secretariat employee who was present for a meeting, said: 'A journalist argued against the setting up of a landfill garbage dump near her home, but the opposition leader had a different point of view.'
Assembly committees are set up to discuss issues of governance and comprise legislators from various parties.
'Going one step further, the speaker also enabled members of the media and the public to state their views before the committee on matters under their consideration,' said an official.
Goa has made another effort to revive its committees that had fallen into disuse for a decade. Not just that, in April, Speaker Pratapsing Rane threw open all state legislative assembly committees to the media and the public here.
But there are restrictions, and the media and citizens cannot ask 'any question or seek any reply either from the committee or from the official witness appearing' before it. The panel chairman has powers to issue orders to the media and citizens.
Speaker Rane has plans to 'rewrite rules of the house and the committees' to meet current needs, to make members testify before committees in place of officers, telecast committee proceedings live, and permit the committees to sit at places outside the assembly - a huge and costly building that is located just outside Panaji but sometimes considered far from some parts of rural Goa.
Goa assembly secretary R. Kothandaraman said the speaker also plans to create 'parliamentary NGOs' to 'enable the legislative assembly to reach out to the masses'.
Kothandaraman, who has served in the national parliament too, points out that the Indian constitution does not speak 'elaborately' about committees, as it does about the whole house. Committees are fairly operational at the parliamentary (federal) level, but dormant in many state legislatures, he says.
'As an effective committee system is perceived as a threat to state governments, committees are either suspended or scrapped or made non-functional,' Kothandaraman admits.
Incidentally, Rane is also credited with taking the initiative to pass Goa's early Right to Information Act in 1997 that worked well for a while before it got grounded in lethargy and political cum bureaucratic sabotage.