MHA junks Kejri's CNG probe plan

MHA junks Kejri's CNG probe plan

Setting the stage for a fresh confrontation with the AAP government, Lieutenant-Governor Najeeb Jung on Friday declared legally invalid Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal’s decision to constitute a commission of inquiry into the CNG fitness scam.

Citing an advice received on the matter from the Union Ministry of Home Affairs, Raj Niwas said in a statement: “It has been clarified that the GNCTD is not the competent authority to set up such an inquiry under various provisions of the Constitution and the Commissions of Inquiry Act, 1952.”

“The notification issued by the GNCTD has therefore been declared legally invalid and void ab initio,” the statement said referring to the ministry’s decision on constitution of a commission of inquiry by the government of NCT of Delhi into the award of work related to the 2002 CNG fitness certificates in Transport Department.

Jung said the Anti-Corruption Branch is looking into the entire matter afresh.
“Notices have been issued by the ACB to all concerned, including government officers named in the original complaint. The ACB has been asked to complete the investigation on priority,” said Jung, in a statement.

Jung had earlier sought the central government’s opinion on the Kejriwal government’s decision to constitute a commission of inquiry into the CNG vehicle fitness scam dating back to the Congress rule in 2012.

The L-G’s letter to the central government came close to a day after a former official of the state Transport Department moving the Delhi High Court questioning the city government’s powers to constitute a commission of inquiry related to the alleged scam.
On August 11, the AAP government decided to appoint Justice (retd) S N Agarwal, a former judge of Delhi and Madhya Pradesh High Courts, for the probe.

The move sparked a controversy as experts claimed that the commission was constituted by Kejriwal without apparently having the power to do so.

The decision of the Kejriwal government to constitute the inquiry seemed to be a reaction to the ACB summoning the Chief Minister’s top aide Rajender Kumar, IAS, in connection with the scam. Kumar earlier served in the Transport Department.

Kumar was summoned as part of the ACB’s ongoing probe into the scam.
The AAP has been accusing Jung of trying to shield the officers found guilty by a CBI probe into the scam which was detected by state government’s ACB in 2012.
 

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