ZERO TOLERANCE TOWARDS CORRUPTION: NAVJOT SINGH SIDHU—UPDATE
North India Kaleidoscope Bureau
The Punjab Government on Monday issued two contradictory press notes relating to so-called ” suspension” of Mohali Mayor Kulwant Singh. It has been finally clarified that the Punjab Local Government Minister Navjot Singh Sidhu issued a show-cause notice to Mr.Kulwant Singh as to why he should not be “removed” for allegedly causing huge losses to the state exchequer by purchasing tree-pruning machinery. Two municipal corporation officials have been suspended while another two have been charge-sheeted.
The earlier press note :
“Corrupt practices would not be tolerated at any cost and as part of this commitment the Mayor of Municipal Corporation, Mohali Kulwant Singh has been suspended along with three other officers after taking strong note of the misdemeanours of these people regarding causing loss to the state exchequer. The case recommending suspension of the then Commissioner has been sent to the Government. Apart from this two other officials have been charge-sheeted too,”Punjab Local Government Minister Navjot Singh Sidhu said here on Thursday.
Mr.Sidhu asserted that it is an article of faith with him to have zero tolerance towards corruption and nobody would be permitted to misuse the hard earned money of the taxpayers.
He disclosed that it had come to the notice of the Department that the Mayor in connivance with the then Commissioner Rajesh Dhiman and other officials allegedly indulged in the blatant misuse of his position and caused a loss of grave nature to the state exchequer while making a purchase of the Tree Pruning Machine. The machine was priced at Rs. 28 lakh in the country while for making its purchase from abroad the price was Rs. 80 lakh. But a resolution was passed for purchasing it at exorbitant price of Rs. 1.79 crore and orders were placed for its purchase.
Mr.Sidhu said that the Department got the probe conducted by the vigilance cell and the orders initiating action have been issued against the Mayor and officials found “guilty” in the report of the Chief Vigilance Officer (CVO).
Acting on the report of CVO, orders have been issued for suspension of Mayor Kulwant Singh from Mayorship and from councillorship as well for causing misuse of power and causing financial loss to Municipal Corporation, Mohali. Similarly, the then Commissioner Rajesh Dhiman has been charge-sheeted in accordance with the Punjab Civil Services (Punishment & Appeal) Rules 1970 Section 8 and case recommending his suspension has been sent to the concerned department. In the same vein, XEN Naresh Batta and DCFA Vinayak have been suspended according to the Punjab Civil Services (Punishment & Appeal) Rules 1970 Section 8. Apart from this, ACE Mohinderpal and Surinder Goyal have both been charge-sheeted and recommendation has been made for charge-sheeting Internal Local Fund Auditor of the Municipal Corporation, Mohali. The orders placed for purchasing the machine have been cancelled promptly and the recovery of amount paid in advance to the contractor has also been ordered.