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    Finmin sits on CBI request to prosecute IES official

    Synopsis

    The finance ministry has been sitting on CBI’s request to sanction prosecution of senior Indian Economic Service official Kailashpati Aneja, accused of amassing assets disproportionate to his known sources of income.

    NEW DELHI: The finance ministry has been sitting on CBI’s request to sanction prosecution of senior Indian Economic Service official Kailashpati Aneja, accused of amassing assets disproportionate to his known sources of income.

    CBI had written a letter to the finance ministry 14 months ago, on August 26, 2011, seeking its permission to prosecute Aneja, a 1981-batch IES official. The case relates to his stint in the Department of Telecom (DoT).

    Aneja was a director in DoT when the DA case (RC 55/2005) was registered against him. According to a CBI officer, the agency found that the IES official had collected cash, jewellery and immovable properties, whose total valued exceeded a crore.

    The official has since reverted to the finance ministry, his parent organisation, and was promoted to the rank of a joint secretary. In keeping with rules, CBI sought the ministry’s permission to probe the DA case probe against Aneja under Section 6A of the Delhi Special Police Establishment Act, 1946.

    The clause makes its mandatory for CBI to seek approval of the Centre to conduct inquiry or investigation in certain specific cases. “The Delhi Special Police Establishment shall not conduct any enquiry or investigation into any offence alleged to have been committed under the Prevention of Corruption Act,1988, (49 of 1988) except with the previous approval of the central Government where such allegation relates to (a) the employees of the central government of the level of joint secretary and above; and (b) such officers as are appointed by the central government in corporations established by or under any central Act, government companies, societies and local authorities owned or controlled by that government,’’ the law states.

    After dragging its feet, the finance ministry finally granted permission to CBI to begin its DA probe against Aneja. During the investigation, the agency came across evidence to suggest that the official had indeed misused his official position to compile assets disproportionate to his known sources of income. The agency completed its DA probe against Aneja towards the middle of last year, and subsequently sought the finance ministry’s goahead to begin prosecution proceedings against him. But it’s yet to hear from the ministry on the subject.
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