Hyderabad: The Central Administrative Tribunal (CAT) has scrapped the petition filed by former additional director general (Intelligence) A.B Venkateswara Rao. The CAT, on 17 March, endorsed the stand of the Andhra government by stating that Mr Venkateswara Rao’s suspension is justified.

The suspended officer knocked the doors of the Central Administrative Tribunal in the second week of February, urging it to declare his suspension was against the rules and guidelines. Mr Rao, said that he was not being paid his salary since 31 May last year. The officer claimed in his petition, that the government suspended him over baseless allegations. He urged the CAT to scrap the suspension orders as they were issued following political pressure.

A B Venkateswara Rao is the second All India Service (AIS) officer to challenge the suspension orders from  the Andhra Pradesh government. The government has alleged that Mr Rao violated the protocol of trust and leaked information to private people, which attracts conspiracy against the state.

Meanwhile, senior officers in the AP police department are tight-lipped over the ongoing developments. It may be recalled that the Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA) has asked the Andhra Pradesh government to go ahead and take action against the suspended officer and file a charge-sheet before 7 April. Mr Rao, who was the Intelligence chief in the previous Chief Minister N Chandrababu Naidu’s regime, was suspended by the AP government on 8 February on charges of ‘serious misconduct’ in the procurement of security equipment and indulging in acts amounting to even treason.

In its communication to the chief secretary of AP earlier this month, Rajiv Kumar Nigam, the under-secretary to the Central government, said the Centre has decided to confirm the suspension of Mr Rao as per Rule 3 (1) of the All India Services (D&A) Rules, 1969. “The state government is requested to file a charge-sheet against the officer latest by 7 April 2020,” the MHA’s order stated.

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