TWO DAYS after the Punjab Vigilance Bureau had filed a cancellation report in a Ludhiana court in the alleged multi-crore city centre scam, while giving a clean chit to an accused, Chief Minister Captain Amarinder Singh, former Deputy Speaker and whistle-blower in another Amritsar Improvement Trust (AIT) scam, has said he was “disappointed” and beseeched the higher court to intervene and take suo motu action.
Bir Devinder, a former colleague of Amarinder, said Monday that it is shocking that “whistle-blowers like him put their bright political career at stake and yet the institutionalised and mega corruption reigned supreme”. In the multi-crore AIT scam, Amarinder was given a clean chit last October after the Vigilance Bureau had filed a cancellation report. “I am shocked at the silent burial being given to these cases one by one. I stood up as a whistle-blower but why are the other pillars of the system, including the judiciary, prosecution, investigation and media, quiet?” he asked.
On why was Bir Devinder, being a whistle-blower, keeping quiet, he said he was willing to file a PIL provided a lawyer offered to help him. “I have contacted many lawyers but they seek a fee of Rs 10-15 lakh to contest a high-profile case like this. I am shocked that in the AIT case, the whistle-blower was never called by any agency while filing a closure report. An official of Vidhan Sabha went and told the court that the Assembly did not have any objection to the closure. Did the Vidhan Sabha ask the whistle-blower?”
Bir Devinder had raised a question in the 12th Vidhan Sabha from 2002 to 2007, on February 22, 2006, alleging a scam of Rs 360 crore to help colonisers by exempting the acquistion of land out of an 188-acre scheme. The subcommittee of the Vidhan Sabha, constituted after his question, had handed the case to the VB. The VB, had in September 2008, registered a case under sections 420 (cheating), 467/468 (forgery), 471 (using as genuine a forged document) and 120-B (criminal conspiracy) of the Indian Penal Code and various sections of the Prevention of Corruption Act.