EC Suspends Odisha CM’s Special Secy D S Kutey, Orders Medical Test For Another IPS Officer

Bhubaneswar: The Election Commission of India (ECI) on Tuesday suspended D S Kutey, special secretary to Odisha Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik, for “unduly interfering in conduct of election.”

“Kutey should be placed under suspension for unduly interfering in conduct of election. His headquarters is fixed at the office of Resident Commissioner Odisha, New Delhi, where he will report by 3 pm on May 29. Chief Electoral Officer, Odisha, would provide to the Chief Secretary of Odisha draft of the chargesheet to be issued to Kutey and Odisha Chief Secretary would arrange chargesheet under relevant service rules by 5 pm of May 30,” the order said

The ECI also directed IG (CM Security) Ashish Kumar Singh, who is on medical leave since May 4, to appear for a detailed medical examination by a special medical board constituted by Director of AIIMS-Bhubaneswar. “The CEO will coordinate to ensure that Director, AllMS-Bhubaneswar, constitutes a special medical board to ascertain illness and treatment being undergone. A report in this regard should reach the Commission by May 31,” it said.

Singh is a 2010-batch IPS officer.

“The CEO Odisha in his communication on May 27 had made certain averments indicating undue influence being exercised by Kutey and Singh on officers directly connected with conduct of election work. This was further corroborated by various other inputs received from the field from time to time,” it added.

Last month, the Bharatiya Janata Party accused Kutey, a 1997-batch IPS officer, of working for the Biju Janata Dal by staying at the Chief Minister’s Office.

To curb undue influence on the election machinery and maintain a level-playing field and fairness in the electoral process, the Commission has also ordered expeditious investigation in the case registered against Prashant Jagdev, BJP MLA candidate from Khurda assembly constituency, who was arrested on Monday for allegedly damaging an EVM at a polling booth.

Earlier this month, the EC had ordered the transfer of Sujata R Karthikeyan, wife of former IAS officer and BJD leader V K Pandian, from Mission Shakti department to a “non-public facing department” after a complaint of alleged misuse of public office, was lodged by the BJP.

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