Amit Shah flags delay in investigations against MHA employees facing graft charges

In a recent communication issued by the Ministry of Home Affairs’ vigilance branch, it was “observed by the home minister that the prescribed schedule of time limits in conducting investigations and departmental inquiries is not being followed by ...

Agencies
As per CVC guidelines, probes should be conducted within one to six months
NEW DELHI: Union home minister Amit Shah has flagged the delay in investigations against MHA employees facing graft charges and inquiries by the Central Vigilance Commission (CVC). Shah, who is currently recovering from the coronavirus infection at the All India Institute of Medical Science (AIIMS), is learnt to be attending work and issuing directions from the hospital.

In a recent communication issued by the Ministry of Home Affairs’ vigilance branch, it was “observed by the home minister that the prescribed schedule of time limits in conducting investigations and departmental inquiries is not being followed by the departments, divisions as per the instructions issued by CVC”. The CVC is a top anti-corruption watchdog, monitoring all vigilance activities under the central government.

Officials said Shah’s directives came following a large number of pending complaints not only against MHA officials but from 25 other departments under the home minister, including the Central Armed Police Forces (CAPFs), National Investigation Agency (NIA), Registrar General of India (RGI), Intelligence Bureau (IB), among others.


According to the CVC guidelines, any departmental investigations or internal probe should be conducted within one to six months depending upon the nature of allegations and prima-facie offence.

The cases under the scanner include corruption allegations against a superintendent of police (SP) of the federal anti-terror agency. He, along with others, were suspended last year for allegedly demanding Rs 2 crore bribe from a Delhi-based businessman, for not naming him in a terror funding case involving Mumbai attack mastermind Hafiz Saeed. Another instance relates to a CBI probe against an IRS officer who was incharge of the Custodian of Enemy Property (CEP) in Mumbai, officials added.

The CVC, in its report, further raised the delay in granting prosecution sanction against officials named by the CBI in the corruption cases. Under section 19 of the Prevention of Corruption Act, 1988, previous sanction from the Union is necessary for prosecution. The sanction in some cases has been pending beyond four months, as per the CVC.
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Meanwhile, in a statement on Saturday, AIIMS authorities said: “Amit Shah, union home minister, has recovered and is likely to be discharged in a short time.”
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