S S Puri
Born in 1942 into a distinguished family of Punjab, S.S.Puri studied in Patiala and got an M.A.(Philosophy) degree from Mahendera College. He then went on to get an LL.B. from Punjab University (Chandigarh) in 1966 and joined the Indian Police Service (IPS) in 1967, opting for the Maharashtra cadre
He served with distinction as Superintendent of Police in four major districts and as Deputy Inspector General of Police of the Marathwada and Kolhapur Ranges .During his field postings, communal disturbances were put down with a heavy hand, reflecting his concern for a secular polity as also the maintenance of peace and order. Throughout his career, he constantly updated his study of the law as also of techniques for its enforcement while attending several professional courses at the National Police Academy(Hyderabad), Tata Institute of Social Sciences(Mumbai), Indian Institute of Public Administration(New Delhi) and Administrative Staff College of India(Hyderabad).This combination of practical experience and an academic bent of mind was evident in his seminal contribution to the drafting of the Maharashtra Control of Organized Crime Act of 1999.
During his distinguished career, he held many important posts including that of Commissioner Food and Drugs Administration, Director of Public Prosecutions, Managing Director Maharashtra State Police Housing Corporation and Additional Director-General of Police (Law and Order).In each of these assignments, he made his mark..
His insistence on adhering to conduct of rules – he held intrinsic – made several of his colleagues uncomfortable in his company. It did not endear him to the authority either.
An outstanding feature of his career has been the uncovering of cases of corruption, as Chief Vigilance Officer of the Mumbai Port Trust, his efforts resulted in the indictment of several Heads of Departments. As Director-General of the Anti-Corruption Bureau his investigations into a recruitment scam led to the arrest of the Chairman and some Members of the Maharashtra Public Service Commission under the Prevention of Corruption Act. After retirement, he was appointed by the Bombay High Court as Director-General of Police, Special Investigation Team, to look into the multi-crore fake revenue stamp/stamp paper scandal. He won the approbation of the media and large segments of society when his enquiries caused the arrest of senior IPS officers and the questioning of senior IAS officers as also top politicians like the Home Minister and Chief Minister. His performance stood out for its fearlessness in indicting the high and mighty in a prevailing atmosphere of deep cynicism about the functioning of the criminal and judicial systems.
In recognition of his valuable contributions to public life, he was awarded the Police Medal for meritorious service in 1985 and the President’s Medal for distinguished services in 1995.
Mr. Puri has written numerous articles on law, procedure and investigation. He is author of two books:
- Prosecutor’s Digest 1997
- Police, Prosecution, Adjudication and Law 2006
Post retirement, he worked as advisor to the Reserve Bank of India on bank frauds, S.S.Puri now does consultancy in law as an Advocate, Bombay High Court. He is also working, as a trustee, with Mr. Julio Ribeiro, Chairman, Public Concern for Governance Trust. In addition, he is a consultant on security with a renowned multinational life insurance company.
Mr. Puri is also functioning as Editor, Worli Waves – a neighbourhood magazine.
SS Puri is married to Dr. S. Jyoti Puri, a research scientist who is also an accomplished artist, with several exhibitions to her credit. After teaching assignments with the Scindia School, Gwalior and Ryan International Schools, Mumbai, she is currently busy in art and social work. Their children, Puja and Prashant, are respectively lawyer in Mumbai and systems engineer in Canada.