Chief Minister Amarinder Singh (File)
The Cabinet on Thursday cleared appointment of former Army Major Sumeer Singh and mountaineer Fateh Singh Brar as DSPs in the Punjab Police as a “special case”. An exception had to be made in the duo’s case as Punjab does not have a policy to appoint a mountaineer, and Major Singh did not meet the criteria of minimum height for appointment to the post.
The files pertaining to the appointment of both had been making rounds of various government offices for a long time. Chief Secretary Karan Avtar Singh had even objected to the proposal. But Chief Minister Amarinder Singh, said sources, was keen on seeing the appointments through.
A government statement said Brar, one of the youngest mountaineers in the country, had scaled Mt Everest at the age of 16 years 9 months on May 21, 2013, while Major Sumeer Singh was involved in a number of cross border operations and was instrumental in eliminating terrorists in cross border surgical operations conducted by the 9 PARA Special Force.
“Brar’s appointment as Deputy Superintendent of Police would go a long way in encouraging adventurous sports in the state, besides felicitating and providing better opportunities to outstanding achievers in their respective field of sports,” the statement said. In the case of Major Sumeer, the Cabinet decided to relax the Punjab Police Services Rules, 1959 to enable his direct recruitment as DSP.
In recognition of his outstanding services in the Army, the Punjab Police department had desired to utilise his services, especially amid efforts by terrorists to revive militancy in the state. The department felt the need to recruit persons who possess in-depth knowledge and experience of combating terrorism, intelligence gathering, building intervention and hostage rescue operations etc. Besides this, the services of such meritorious officers are also required for the purpose of imparting training to the Punjab Police personnel of different ranks, in order to make them proficient in conducting such operations.
Major Sumeer, who was posted with the elite 9 PARA Special Forces Regiment and participated in many anti-terrorist operations, possessed good experience of combating terrorism for more than 8 years in Jammu & Kashmir. He was awarded Sena Medal (Gallantry) in 2017. He had also attained Instructor ratings in most of the courses, including the ‘Commando Course’ of the Indian Army, the statement said. Major Sumeer was appointed ETO last year and is posted at Patiala.