CVC flags 42 cases, 10 by railways, of non-compliance of its advice against corrupt officials

The 2020 annual report was tabled in Parliament during the monsoon session and uploaded on its website on August 31

The Central Vigilance Commission (CVC) has flagged 42 cases, including 10 by the railways and five by Canara Bank, where government departments significantly deviated from its advice to act against corrupt officials, according to a report.

Besides the railways and Canara Bank, there were two such cases each by Syndicate Bank, Bank of India, Mahanadi Coalfields Limited and Employees’ Provident Fund Organisation (EPFO), the report said.

Also, one case each has been reported in Union Bank of India, Andhra Bank, LIC of India, Central Board of Indirect Taxes and Customs (CBIC), Oil India Limited and Oil and Natural Gas Corporation Limited, it said.

One case each by the Government of National Capital Territory of Delhi (GNCTD), Khadi and Village Industries Commission, NTPC Limited, Bureau of Indian Standards, Department of Empowerment of Persons with Disabilities, Ministry of Shipping, National Highways Authority of India and Airport Authority of India among others were also noted for noncompliance of the CVC advice against the corrupt.

The CVC has observed that during the last year, there were some significant deviations from the Commission’s advice. The 2020 annual report was tabled in Parliament during the monsoon session and uploaded on its website on Tuesday.

“Non-acceptance of the Commission’s advice or non-consultation with the Commission vitiates the vigilance process and weakens the impartiality of the vigilance administration,” it said.

Giving details of the cases of deviation by the railways, the report said a Senior Section Engineer/Quality Assurance/Signal & Telecom/Research Designs & Standards Organisation inspected and passed substandard signalling cable of length 42.196 km supplied by the contractor.

On November 18, 2019, the Commission, after considering the report of Inquiry Officer and comments of Disciplinary Authority (DA), advised imposition of a major penalty on the Senior Section Engineer/Quality Assurance, the report said.

The Disciplinary Authority (General Manager/Southern Railway), in an order on March 17, 2020, however, imposed a minor penalty, it said.

Citing a case in Canara Bank, the CVC said a limited infra projects firm was sanctioned working capital fund based limit of ₹50 crore and non-fund based limit of ₹150 crore by Credit Approval Committee (CAC) on August 1, 2013.

“There were persisting overdues in the working capital account. DGM of the branch permitted an additional bank guarantee limit of ₹21.50 crores in favour of Family Credit Limited for allowing funds against retention money receivable, beyond his delegated powers with 5% margin on 12.01.2016,” it said.

After issue of the bank guarantee of ₹21.5 crore, there was a credit of ₹20.16 crores into the account, subsequent to which the account turned NPA, the report said.

The Commission advised for imposition of a major penalty on the DGM as recommended by the Chief Vigilance Officer (CVO).

The DA imposed a major penalty of “reduction to a lower stage in time scale of pay by one stage for a period of one year during which period he shall not earn increments of pay and the reduction shall have the effect of postponing future increments of his pay”.

“On an appeal preferred by the DGM, the Appellate Authority reduced the major penalty to that of a minor penalty of censure, it said.

The CVC report said the CBI had registered a case against officials of Khadi & Village Industries Commission (KVIC) on the basis of complaint with allegations that the public servant has cheated the government to the extent of ₹80.78 lakh on the pretext of executing Central programmes in respect of Marketing Development Assistance (MDA) scheme.

One of the alleged officers of the case did not conduct the inspection before release of MDA assistance, it said.

As a result of which huge amount of funds meant for artisans could not reached them, the report said.

The CVC on January 31, 2018 advised the initiation of a major penalty proceedings against four officials of Khadi & Village Industries Commission.

“The Disciplinary Authority imposed the penalty in line with Commission’s advice on the three charged officers. One of the charge officers was exonerated by the Disciplinary Authority without consultation of the Commission which is violation of vigilance administration. The decision of disciplinary authority is at variance with Commission’s advice,” it said.

Highlighting another case, the CVC said it had received a complaint from the then Leader of Opposition (LoP), Delhi Legislative Assembly alleging gross irregularities in the matter of introduction of IT by using smart optical card by Transport Department of GNCTD.

The CVC on 15.09.2006 had advised the Govt of NCT Delhi, to fix responsibility and revert to the Commission for seeking its first stage advice.

“The matter had already been pending for 14 years. Therefore, the Commission had conveyed its ‘displeasure’ to the head of the vigilance wing of transport department of GNCTD and decided to include this case in its annual report for non-compliance of the directive of the Commission,” the report added.

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