Behera deployed addl security personnel to wife's workplace in Technopark

Loknath Behera
Loknath Behera. Photo: Manorama

Thiruvananthapuram: Former Director General of Police (DGP) Loknath Behera deployed additional force for the security of Technopark, placing an additional financial burden of Rs 1.70 crore on the State exchequer.

The present DGP Anil Kanth has now written to the Secretary (Home), seeking his advice on meeting the additional expense. Kanth has also withdrawn the additional 18 woman police officers deployed to the firm where Behera's wife has been working.

Technopark authorities, meanwhile, informed the DGP that they had requested for additional force to be deployed to the firm. Behera told Kanth that the personnel were assigned the duty based on an oral request.

The security of Technopark is the responsibility of the State Industrial Security Force (SISF) under the Kerala Police. The Technopark has entered into an agreement with the State in 2017, saying it would pay for the security provided.

While the park requested a 22-member security team, Behera deployed 40 officers, including the additional 18 women officers assigned to his wife's office. The deployment of additional force was without the knowledge of the government or Technopark.

Technopark has been paying Rs 1,500 a day for an armed police officer, and 1,400 for unarmed officers. The park has been remitting the amount to the government annually.

The SISF commandant demanded the salary of the 18 additional officers, which the Technopark's Chief Executive Officer rejected, saying the park had not requested their service.  

Despite mounting dues, the additional force was not withdrawn. DGP Anil Kanth withdrew the additional personnel the day after Behera's retirement in June 2021.

Post retirement, Behera was appointed as the Managing Director of Kochi Metro.

Technopark stands firm, SISF puts ball in DGP's court

The State Industrial Security Force (SISF) commandant has informed the DGP that those who had deployed the additional officers should pay their salary of Rs 1.70 crore.

The SISF commandant took the decision after an audit report recommended to realise the amount from Technopark, which has been firm on its stand that it had not requested additional force.  

The DGP wrote to the Home Department after the higher-ups in the police force realised the danger they would be in if the Accountant General finds this irregularity.

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