Jung panel to study 400 Delhi files, Kejriwal says ‘witch hunting’

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New Delhi, Aug 30 (IANS) Lt Governor Najeeb Jung on Tuesday set up a three-member panel to study irregularities in over 400 files of the Delhi government. Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal called it “witch hunting”.

On August 4, the Delhi High Court had called for review of cases where prior approval of Jung was needed under rules but was not obtained by the Delhi government.

The three-member team is made up of V.K. Shunglu, a former Comptroller and Auditor General, N. Gopalaswami, a former Chief Election Commissioner, and Pradeep Kumar, a former Chief Vigilance Commissioner.

The committee has been told to submit its interim reports and recommendations from time to time and to submit the final report within six weeks of the first meeting.

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“The three-member committee is an independent committee of eminent persons who have been in public life for several decades and have held high positions in the government with supreme integrity and absolute probity,” a statement from the Lt Governor said.

In response to the high court judgement, about 400 files had been received from the Delhi government for Jung’s approval.

“On preliminary scrutiny of these files, it is found that over the last one and half years several decisions taken are in violation of Acts/Rules with attendant legal and financial implications.

“It has become necessary to examine them in depth and suggest forward action. Therefore, the Committee has been constituted,” the release added.

The committee shall broadly determine whether the decisions taken in these files and the processes adopted were in violation of the acts and rules as well as the constitutional scheme for governance of Delhi.

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The committee will also examine the role played by public functionaries and officers of Delhi and any other individual related with these violations and fix responsibility.

The committee may also recommend appropriate administrative, criminal or civil action as well as action for recovery of financial loss to government exchequer, if any, by such wrong decisions against the public functionaries, officers or individuals concerned.

The committee has also been asked to recommend course of action to be taken on each of the files including whether the decisions can or cannot be regularized by the Lt Governor.

Kejriwal tweeted: “This is witch hunting. Like they arrested (AAP) MLAs on false cases, they will victimize officers now.

“Let an independent three-member committee scrutinize all files cleared by Modiji also and let’s compare the results.”

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