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Home » Who is Basant Rath and Why he wants to join politics?

Who is Basant Rath and Why he wants to join politics?

Who is Basant Rath and Why he wants to join politics?

Senior IPS official Basant Kumar Rath announced his resignation on social media on Sunday, saying he wanted to join electoral politics in Jammu and Kashmir.

A controversial police officer, who has several admirers in the Kashmir valley, posted his resignation letter on social media. “I wish to resign from the Indian Police Service so that I can participate in electoral politics.

Sharing his copy of the resignation letter addressed to J&K Chief Secretary Arun Kumar Mehta and marked for Police Director General Dilbag Singh and National Guard Commander General H K Lohia, Rath said: “I wish to resign from the Police Service of India in order to participate in electoral politics. “Please consider this letter as my request for resignation/voluntary withdrawal and process it accordingly,” he said in his letter dated June 25.

While Rath said he wanted to join electoral politics, he had shown a dislike for political leaders in the past. In a tweet posted a few hours before posting his resignation letter, he said: “If I ever join a political party, IT WILL BE BJP. If I ever stand for election, it will be from Kashmir. If I ever enter politics, it will be before March 6, 2024.”

In his previous columns and tweets of his, the IPS officer of batch 2000 had many times shown his distaste for the BJP’s “communal politics”.

In July 2020, the Home Office (MHA) initiated an investigation against Rath and suspended him for “repeated instances of misconduct and serious misconduct which have been brought to the attention of the government”.

He also asked Rath not to “leave the headquarters without permission from the DGP.”

Although he is popular in the Valley, especially among the youth (he distributed free books for competitive exams), Rath is not liked by many in the administration. His Kashmir-focused op-eds and poetry, which included a poem about the 1990 Gawkadal incident, in which 50 people were killed when paramilitary personnel opened fire on a protest, also did not go down well with many officials in both the Center and in Jammu and Kashmir.

Rath is No Stranger to Controversy

In 2018, Basant Rath seized the car of an army officer, who turns out to be the son and son-in-law of two high-ranking IPS officers in J&K. Both Rath and the army officer filed FIRs against each other at the police station.

Later, In a video, Congress MLA Usman Majeed alleged that Rath was acting like a bully. He also questioned the IPS officer’s posts on Facebook that he called “indecent” and “insensitive.”

In one of his Facebook posts, Rath compared helmets to condoms, urging people to use both to protect life. Rath was embroiled in a controversy for allegedly abusing Chief Minister Mehbooba Mufti’s media analyst Javed Trali.

Also Read:  Iltija Mufti: The Heir of a Political Legacy?

He even took on his seniors in the department. “My dear senior who thinks I am all gas on Facebook and Twitter and no guts. Please ask your PSOs to drive their bikes without wearing helmets. I’ll ruin their day. And yours. I don’t think I love you,” he had posted on social media when he was IGP Traffic.

Rath compiled his first collection of English poetry, titled Own me, Srinagar in 2012.

Influenced by the late Kashmiri-American poet Aga Shahid Ali, Rath’s first poem, titled Pindi, Pindi, Pindi, was based on the rush of young Kashmiri men who crossed the Line of Control in 1989 to obtain weapons and training from Pakistan.

Pindi, Pindi, Pindi, by Basant Kumar Rath
I’m 1989 and old enough
To trek all night
In an unknown forest
Among the known mountains
Under the moth-eaten moons.
No drinking water.
No candy wrapper.
No smoking. No coughing.
No humming of a wedding song.
Under the sleeping eyes
Of a night vision device
May the light machine gun sleep long.

Another poem of Rath:

You are seven shocked policemen
Who came to collect fifty eight dead bodies.
Angry but helpless, helpful but unlucky,
They loaded the truck and drove
To the police control room.

Who is Basant rath?

Basant Rath (born 1972) is the Inspector General of Police in the Jammu and Kashmir Police. He is a 2,000 cadre Indian Police Service (IPS) officer.

Hailing from Odisha and a Jawaharlal Nehru University (JNU) alumnus, Batch 2000 IPS Officer Basant Rath is best known for his outspokenness on social networking sites like Facebook and microblogging site Twitter. Rath was born in Uttarkashi village in Pipli, Puri district, Odisha. His father Hrushikesh was a village priest and farmer

In 2002, when Rath was appointed as the new IPS officer in Mandi, Poonch District, he started handing out books to students during his probationary period. His initiative had gotten bigger and more organized by the end of 2002.

Rath is also known as Book Baba. Actually, it’s an initiative started by Rath. Use social media to reach NEET and JEE exam applicants. Rath has so far distributed several thousand books.

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