Rakesh Asthana rewarded again. A profile of the Dabang cop. - Vibes Of India

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Rakesh Asthana rewarded again. A profile of the Dabang cop.

| Updated: July 28, 2021 00:42

Not every one would get such wonderful news four days before their retirement.But Gujarat cadre’s 1984 batch IPS officer Rakesh Asthana is a lucky man.Some call it a reward for political services,others term it as destiny and some others call it “purely merit” but Rakesh Asthana wouldn’t comment on it.
Rahul Gandhi called him Modi’s blue eyed body when Asthana was embroiled in a serious spat with his immediate boss, CBI Director Alok Verma. 

Now, proving Rahul Gandhi correct, Rakesh Asthana has been appointed the Commissioner of Police of Delhi.

Considered to be a top most police posting in India, Asthana replaces Balaji Srivastava. Unlike most States,Delhi police is not run or ruled by the State Government. Delhi Police comes under the jurisdiction of the Ministry of Home Affairs, Government of India. The sanctioned strength of Delhi Police is 90,000 plus personnel, making it one of the largest metropolitan police forces in the world.

So why does Rakesh Asthana get this post?

Asthana was due to retire in next four days. However, in a much anticipated decision, he got a year’s extension and  was rewarded with a plush appointment as the Delhi Police Commissioner. Asthana at present , is the DG,Border Security Force. Tonight, he has wrapped up his work. 
On Wednesday morning, he will be taking charge as the Delhi CP.

But why Asthana?

Asthana is considered a blue eyed boy of Prime Minister Narendra Modi, an epithet given by Congress leader Rahul Gandhi after Asthana’s boss Alok Verma was sent on a forced leave from the CBI following the infamous Asthana-Verma spat. Asthana was also sent on leave after the dramatic midnight coup. But soon CBI chief Alok Verma was dismissed “in the interest of fairness” and to maintain the credibility of the institution. This was done to favour Asthana. So Asthana gets this Delhi CP post inarguably because he is the good books of PM Modi.

How did he get into the good books of PM Modi.

Asthana was first noticed by BJP veteran L K Advani.Asthana used to handle Advani’s security details during LKA’s hey days as Deputy Prime Minister and Union Home Minister. Asthana, who hails from Bihar was known to be anti Congress even when Congress was in power though at one point of time he was believed to be close to late Congress leader Ahmed Patel.
During his reputation to his home State Bihar, it was a young Asthana who had arrested Lalu Prasad Yadav in the Fodder scam.

Asthana tacitly remained low profile during the Congress rule. Unlike other officers, Asthana kept himself away from involving himself in any sorts of commissions from bootlegging or crime, a common practice in Dry Gujarat. Instead, he focused on networking with industrialists. Asthana’s proximity with Reliance group and Sandesaras was well known in Gujarat. 
Advani introducd Asthana to Modi in 2002. Post Gujarat riots, they became close as Asthana reportedly helped Modi to face Opposition charges of Genocide.

It was then that Asthana started growing. He was the first IPS  officer of Gujarat who had special videos made on him. Soon, he became a popular celebrity on social media. Asthana never minced words since he joined the services that his ideal was Vallabhbhai Patel and not Nehru. This endeared him all the more in Gujarat.

How did he help Gujarat government in 2002

Following pressure from then ruling UPA government, Chief Minister Narendra Modi  appointed a special investigation team headed by Asthana to look into the case in May 2002.
By July 9, the investigation which till then was suggesting spontaneous fight on Godhra railway station changed track, with a local Muslim trader named as the kingpin of the attack that was preplanned and a conspiracy against Hindus in Gujarat. The Sabarmati Express, the burning train was not an accident or result of spontaneous riots but a pre planned conspiracy to kill Hindu pilgrims coming from Ayodhya.

The chargesheet filed in September 2002 by Asthana and his investigating team advanced the theory that the fire in the train was meticulously planned. By February 2003, charges under the Prevention of Terrorism Act were back on few Muslims. But this incident brought him,CM Modi and Amit Shah even closer.


2008, Asthana led the Ahmedabad serial bomb blast case as 22 explosions ripped through the Gujarat city, killing 56 people.The blast had been preceded by an email purportedly signed off by the Indian Mujahideen, claiming responsibility for the strike. Within 22 days, Asthana not only cracked the case but also arrested the accused. He became a Hero. 

Post Gujarat

After CM Modi became PM Modi, Asthana also went to Delhi. Rakesh Asthana has been of great help to the current government in solving several cases, especially politically sensitive cases.

He headed a special investigation team looking into politically sensitive cases, many of which implicate members of the Opposition. These include the AgustaWestland defence scam, corruption charges against Himachal Pradesh Chief Minister Virbhadra Singh, the investigations regarding tycoon and loan defaulter Vijay Mallya and the Rajasthan ambulance scam. Naturally, he became the blue eyed boy of the government.

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