'Efforts To Discredit Me': Former IAS Officer Who Resigned Over Kashmir Restrictions

27 Aug 2019 2:13 PM GMT
Image Credit: Lalluram

A week after handing over his resignation IAS officer Kannan Gopinathan has found himself in troubled waters. A show-cause notice served to him by the Home Ministry in July stating has suddenly brought to fore to imply that his resignation was a result of this notice.

The former IAS officer had cited the restriction in expressing his views on Kashmir and the abrogation of Article 370 as the reason for his resignation.

Gopinathan was serving as the Secretary of the Power Department in the Union Territories of Daman and Diu, and Dadra and Nagar Haveli. He came in the spotlight after he was spotted carrying sacks of relief materials on his back and distributing them at relief camps during floods in Kerala last year.

‘Efforts To Discredit Me’

While speaking to The Wire, Gopinathan denied the allegations and called it ‘efforts to discredit him’. As per media reports, Gopinathan was issued a showcause notice for the act of omission and commission for misconduct in July by Rakesh Kumar Singh, an undersecretary of Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA). The notice outlined five reasons for the proposed disciplinary action against him.

The reasons also included failure to submit a report upon returning from the flood relief works in Kerala. He was also accused of non-compliance of directions issued in preparation of nominations for Prime Minister Award, insubordination and dereliction of duty.

Replying to the notice then, he wrote, “At the outset, I would like to respectfully but out rightly refute the charges made therein of insubordination, dereliction of duty, dilatory tactics etc. It is submitted that I have been performing my duties diligently and to the best of my abilities. That I have been honest and committed to my duties is borne by the fact that Hon’ble Administrator gave 9.95 out of 10.0 on 24 Dec 2018 for my APAR of 2017-2018. The same was accepted by respected Union Home Secretary as the accepting authority.”

While the notice is being raised now, Gopinathan has stood his ground. He told the media that believing an IAS officer resigning ‘over a principle’ is difficult to comprehend for many and hence ‘convenient narrative’ is being set to justify the development.

“Want My Freedom Of Expression Back”

On August 21, Kannan Gopinathan, a 2012-batch IAS officer submitted his resignation. He had then said that his profession did not allow him to express his views freely, especially after the restrictions that have been applied in the valley from last three weeks after the abrogation of Article 370.

In his resignation letter, he wrote, “I joined civil service with the hope that I can be the voice of those who have been silenced, But here, I lost my own voice.”

Also Read: UN Experts Slam Kashmir Communication Clampdown; Refer To The Situation As ‘Collective Punishment’

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