Amarinder removes anti-drugs STF chief

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Chandigarh : Brought with much fanfare nearly 17 months back by Amarinder Singh government in Punjab to spearhead his government's anti-drugs campaign, senior Punjab Police officer Harpreet Singh Sidhu was removed from the post of DGP-Special Task Force (STF) on Saturday.

The sudden move by the Congress government is being seen as toning down of its anti-drugs campaign as the STF actions and reports had caused some political discomfort to the state government.

Sidhu, a DGP-level officer, had actively led the STF over the past one year on the anti-drugs front.

Sidhu has been appointed as Special Principal Secretary to the Chief Minister, considered an inconsequential post.

The government appointed Mohammad Mustafa as the DGP of the STF for anti-drug abuse measures in place of Sidhu "on administrative grounds".

Mustafa would continue to hold the additional charge of DGP (Human Rights).

The Amarinder government had earlier ordered that Sidhu, as STF chief, would report directly to the Chief Minister. However, earlier this year, the wings of the STF chief were clipped and he was ordered to report to the Punjab Director General of Police (DGP) Suresh Arora.