New Delhi, Oct 20 (IANS) Delhi’s ruling AAP on Tuesday complained to Home Minister Rajnath Singh against the abrupt transfer by his ministry of Delhi’s VAT commissioner who they said had busted a hawala racket.
A delegation of Aam Aadmi Party leaders made the complaint at a meeting with Rajnath Singh, saying the home ministry did not even consult the Delhi government before shunting out the official.
Calling it a “serious matter”, AAP leader Ashutosh said “an honest officer who busted a hawala racket … was transferred without consultation (with our government)”.
Ashutosh was accompanied by his colleagues Sanjay Singh and Dilip Pandey.
Value Added Tax Commissioner Vijay Kumar and three other officers of the Delhi government were transferred by Delhi’s Lt. Governor Najeeb Jung on the directions of the home ministry, the AAP said.
“Kumar had tightened the noose around big, influential people who indulged in tax evasion in the national capital. There are great chances that Kumar was removed by the central government under pressure from some big lobby,” Deputy Chief Minister Manish Sisodia had earlier said.
The AAP leaders submitted a memorandum to Rajnath Singh saying the transfer was a “serious matter of corruption and violation of all existing government norms and rules”.
They sought the minister’s immediate intervention.
Pandey later said that the home minister promised to look into the matter.
“Rajnath told us that even the home ministry was not taken into confidence before Kumar’s transfer.”
Later, the AAP leaders also met Anti-Corruption Branch (ACB) chief M.K. Meena and demanded “a thorough and impartial probe into this extremely serious matter which involves corruption”.
The AAP leaders said the VAT department of Delhi had unearthed a major hawala racket by raiding several premises in Delhi.
It was found out that more than 200 companies were being run from a room and a known hawala operator, Naresh Jain, was behind it.
“Before the operator could be nailed, Lt. Governor Najeeb Jung abruptly transferred and relieved the VAT Commissioner, flouting all rules and norms.
“The AAP feels it was done to scuttle the probe into the hawala racket.”