Top officials get angry summons for taking Delhi Lokayukta lightly

 City government’s urban development department on Tuesday once again failed to produce the record of a ‘tampered’ Cabinet decision and other information sought by Delhi Lokayukta Justice Manmohan Sarin.

Junior officials of the department who appeared before the Lokayukta expressed their helplessness, saying that they have written letters to the government administrative department, DSIIDC, and irrigation and flood control department, asking for the documents that the Lokayukta sought. 

But there has been no response. Disappointed with the senior officials’ attitude, Justice Sarin directed the principal secretary of urban development, secretary of general administrative department, chief engineer of flood control and irrigation department, and chief engineer of Delhi State Industrial Infrastructure Development corporation (DSIIDC) to appear before him personally with the records and other information on August 16.

If they fail to do so, proceedings under section 175 of Indian Penal Code and section 195 of Criminal Procedure Code will be initiated against them, the Justice added. Notice issued

The Lokayukta had issued a notice on July 13 to the urban development department on a complaint that a Cabinet decision, permitting cement-concreting of roads in unauthorised colonies where sewage and water lines had “already been laid” was changed to “can be laid”.

According to the complainant, this paved the way for spending Rs 50 crore in 11 colonies where the then urban development minister Raj Kumar Chauhan and his associates had an interest, thus  benefitting them at the cost of the exchequer. 

“It appears that either the nature of these proceedings has not being understood by Delhi government or there is unwillingness to provide information, which is vital for this inquiry, involving serious allegations, such as tampering of Cabinet decision, diversion of funds and its expending for ulterior purposes in colonies where, as per the informant, close associates of public functionary had made investments,” Justice Sarin said while directing senior officials to appear before him. On July 24, a last opportunity was given by the Lokayaukta for furnishing the original records by August 7. Urban department officials who appeared before the Lokayukta included Dharam Pal Sharma, Nagesh Kumar and Manoj Gautam.

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