Delhi Police Commissioner B S Bassi’s name has been dropped from the list of candidates for the post of Central Information Commissioner.
Bassi’s name had come under fire for Delhi Police's handling of the JNU incident and the slapping of sedition charges against JNU Students Union president Kanhaiya Kumar.
Former Central Information Commissioner Shailesh Gandhi had also objected to reported move to appoint Delhi Police Commissioner Bhim Sen Bassi as Information Commissioner saying he "appears to have acquiesced to an open subversion of two of the estates of our nation".
In his letter to Cabinet Secretary P K Sinha, Gandhi wrote that choosing Bassi as Information Commissioner would be a "travesty of the process".
"There should be a transparent process for selecting an Information Commissioner in line with the spirit of the Right to Information Act. I concede that the final selection is a political decision as per the Act, but there should be a transparent process for shortlisting the panel to be presented to the selection committee," Gandhi said.
In his letter, he said at this particular moment when Bassi appears to have acquiesced to an open subversion of two of the estates of our nation, his choice would be very unfortunate.
"By his collusive inaction, journalists were attacked and the sanctity and respect for the judicial system and the courts was diminished.
"Julio Ribeiro (former police officer) has stated with sadness 'I would have arrested the lawyers from their homes at night. I would never condone such acts,' and 'I always had good opinion about Bassi. Unfortunately, circumstances have changed my opinion about him. He is angling for a post-retirement job'," he said.
Gandhi said if the government now makes him an Information Commissioner it would be "a sad day for democracy and people will believe that the denigration of the two estates of governance had the approval of the government."
(with PTI Inputs)