J&K government initiates inquiry against IAS officer over rapistan tweet

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The Jammu and Kashmir government on July 10 has initiated a departmental inquiry against 2010-batch IAS officer Shah Faesal for his April 22 tweet on frequent rapes which said, “Patriarchy+Population+Illiteracy+Alcohol+Porn+Technology+Anarchy = Rapistan!”

After taking stern action on his tweet the government has posted a letter stating, “The department of personnel and training, Government of India, a copy of communication along with its enclosures, in which several references have been made by you in which contents are prima facie in contravention of the extant provisions of all India services (service rules).”

Responding to the letter Faesal reportedly said, “It’s nothing but bureaucratic over-enthusiasm…I don’t think this warrants any action. Rape is not part of government policy that criticism of rape would mean criticism of government policy and invite action.”

“The irony here is that service rules with a colonial spirit are invoked in a democratic India to stifle the freedom of conscience,” he tweeted.

Bureaucrat Faesal is the only IAS officer from Jammu and Kashmir to have ever topped the civil services exam. The 2011 batch officer is currently an Edward S Mason Fellow at Harvard Kennedy School on study leave.

Former Chief Minister Omar Abdullah while defending the bureaucrat tweeted: “Looks like DOPT (Department of Personnel and Training is determined to chase @shahfaesal out of the civil services. The last line of this page is shocking & unacceptable where they question Faesal’s “integrity & honesty”. How is a sarcastic tweet dishonest? How does it make him corrupt?”

The central government in 2016 had banned officials from criticising the government on social media. Under the similar rules, a statement of fact or an opinion which “has the effect of an adverse criticism” of any current or recent policy or action is treated as criticism.