Manipulating the police!
Posted February 17, 2014on:
Having hoodwinked Uma Bharti and Babulal Gaur to become CM and harnessed the bureaucracy through devious means, Chouhan now paid attention to the police department which was headed by Swaraj Puri, considered an Arjun Singh man. In any case, Chouhan did not trust him and wanted there also a “Sahni”. Again the opportunity came when an unknown citizen of Indore went to the court with a complaint that Swaraj Puri had got his son fraudulently admitted to a prestigious engineering college in the NRI quota. The court directed the Economic Offences Wing (EOW) to hold an “inquiry” into the allegation and submit the report to the court. The EOW was then headed by A R Pawar who enjoyed the confidence of the Sangh Parivar and, naturally, of Chouhan also. Apparently at a nod from the chief minister, Pawar hastily registered an FIR against Puri without waiting for the court direction. In no time was Puri removed and Pawar appointed director-general of police in his place. Puri has since retired as D-G of Home Guards. The fraud case against him was dismissed by the court as without substance.
Pawar served Chouhan faithfully and the Sangh Parivar (Bajrang Dal, ABVP, etc.) activists had a field day in the State, thrashing even police personnel if they ever tried to check their socially not-so-acceptable activities. Pawar’s retirement was due when a code of conduct for the 2008 Assembly elections would be in force and the Election Commission would insist on a panel of names being submitted to it for selection of Pawar’s successor. To avoid that situation, Chouhan shifted Pawar to another department just before the code of conduct was to be enforced and appointed S K Raut as the director-general of police in his place. Raut, it may be recalled, was among the first to reach the scene of murder of RTI activist Shehla Masood and mess up with the evidence.
When Prabhat Jha was “elected” president of the State BJP in May 2010, he was still seeing Chouhan as the same humble party worker who used to hang around the party office wringing his hands; Jha was then PRO at the BJP headquarters and was wont to flaunt his proximity to then chief minister Sunderlal Patwa and the (late) party patriarch Kushabhau Thakre. Jha, as the party president, would often make the announcement on behalf of the chief minister causing considerable embarrassment to Chouhan. But Chauhan never showed it and patiently waited for his opportunity which came when the election of the State BJP president became due.