Durga Shakti Nagpal: Being Victimized by the Ruling Dispensation; Honesty Punished

Suspended for cracking whip on the mining mafia in Gautam Buddha Nagar. Pawn in a political game. Acerbic reaction from different political parties. Media cries foul. Clamour for revoking her suspension orders from IAS association getting louder with each passing day. A huge controversy raked up. This is the story of an honest 28-year-old IAS Officer, Durga Shakti Nagpal.

Cornered for daringly exercising her jurisdiction by seizing 24 dumpers to check the raging menace of illegal mining in Noida, Durga Shakti Pal is today the centre of political focus in the country. She was suspended on July 27, less than a year after getting her first posting, by the government of Uttar Pradesh for demolishing an illegal mosque wall. 

Durga Shakti Pal, an IAS officer who took on sand mafia

Durga Shakti Pal, an IAS officer who took on sand mafia

The issue garnered humongous media attention barely within a couple of hours after her suspension orders, based on flimsy grounds, were served to her. Due to the media furor, a huge backlash from the different sections of the society has stirred up. And, now the Samajwadi Party led UP government seems to be trapped in a political muddle with different political parties policing this issue and alleging that the suspension orders have been placed by the UP government under the pressure of “mining mafia.”

The other day I was discussing this issue with a young gentleman (a 20-year-old engineering student with strong political views and a sky high ambition of clearing civil services examination), and we both had the synergy of views on the brazen corruption in the state and fate of this issue. The media outcry has highlighted the issue really well and has once again proven the intense nexus between political parties and the goons (or rather mafias) operating and blooming in Uttar Pradesh. No wonder the state stands today in a dilapidated state!

What astounds me the most is that this country today shelters two institutions with parallel views on the same issue; one being Akhilesh Yadav’s government that justifies her suspension orders in the interest of communal harmony and the other – Honorable Supreme Court of India that passed an order on illegal religious structures 2009 implying that suspended IAS officer Durga Nagpal adhered to procedures and violated no rules.

As per the order of the apex court of India in 2009, no religious structures could be constructed on public parks or streets and any breach would be seriously taken up by the court. Here Mr. Chief Minister Akhilesh Yadav resolutely defends the officer’s suspension by calling her action to demolish the wall of a mosque strong enough to badger the communal harmony. What a faltering attempt to do cover up!

It’s pleasing to see how different groups and individuals – from IAS Association (to withdraw the suspension orders) and Aam Admi Party (offering a ticket to Durga to contest elections against Mulayam Singh Yadav) to Mr. Ram Jethmalaani (senior lawyer, who’d love to take up Durga’s case for Free) – have come out in full support of the suspended officer.

And, more amusing is the most recent turn of events today in which the UP government suddenly seems like going into the damage control mode and contacting the officer after a video (featuring SP Lok Sabha candidate from GB Nagar, Narendra Bhati boldly taking the credit for getting Durga suspended in mere 44 minutes in a speech to his local supporters) went viral clearly stating the deliberate political influence in getting the officer suspended .

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