APSC cash-for-job scam: Chief Minister’s accusing finger points at former IO
The accusing finger of Chief Minister Himanta Biswa Sarma on the issue of some of the ACS and allied officers getting rid of punitive action, it seems, points towards the former investigating officer (IO) in the cash-for-job scam in the APSC.
GUWAHATI: The accusing finger of Chief Minister Himanta Biswa Sarma on the issue of some of the ACS and allied officers getting rid of punitive action, it seems, points towards the former investigating officer (IO) in the cash-for-job scam in the APSC.
It was Dibrugarh police that investigated the cash-for-job scam case (936/2016) in the conduct of CCE (Combined Competitive Examination)-2013 and CCE-2014 by the APSC. The scam came to the fore in 2016, when the BJP-led government came to power in the state. The police arrested over 40 officers, and the inquiry led to their dismissal from service. Off late, the case generated much heat with the filing of an appeal in the Gauhati High Court. The Court did raise some queries as to why some of the candidates remained outside the purview of the police investigation. That led the government to form an SIT (Special Investigation Team) for a detailed investigation.
Speaking to the media in the case today, the Chief Minister said, “I am in the dark as to why the former investigating officer did not inquire into 34 candidates. I did not look into the inquiry, as it was an independent investigation by the police. When the High Court raised some questions about 34 candidates, I came to know that the investigating officer had not sent the answer scripts of the 34 candidates to the Forensic Laboratory. Now, I will sit with the SIT and make sure that it sends the answer scripts of the 34 candidates to the forensic laboratory. If any of them are found guilty, we will act against them. It’s fair that the police caught some of the guilty officers. I’m in the dark as to why the police let some of the candidates go unquestioned. I’m shocked as to why the then investigation officer did not send the answer scripts of the 34 candidates to the forensic laboratory.”
Regarding Justice (retd) Biplab Kumar Sharma’s report on CCE-2013, the Chief Minister said, “Justice Sharma recommended that the jobs of all candidates who passed the CCE-2013 should go. It is also a fact that some poor candidates also passed the CCE-2013. We are in doubt if such a step will be fair enough. We have constituted a committee to make the right decision. Justice Sharma gave examples of anomalies concerning the 34 candidates who were outside the police inquiry. He even said there might be more such candidates. If we disqualify two APSC batches, our administrative machinery will come to a grinding halt. Maybe these two batches have some meritorious candidates. Now, we are waiting for Justice Sharma’s report on CCE-2014. If Justice Sharma recommends similarly as CCE-2013, we will have to take the decision on either of the ways.”