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Tuesday, November 30, 2021

Haryana IAS officer issues sports certificate to shooter son, he uses it to get into HCS; Khemka cries fraud

Seeking a stern action on the “misconduct” and “criminal offences” allegedly committed by the father and son, Khemka has written to the state government, explaining the “modus operandi” of the “fraud”.

Written by Varinder Bhatia | Chandigarh |
Updated: January 8, 2020 2:40:47 pm
haryana news, ashok Khemka, Haryana Civil Services, former haryana sports secretary, indian express Ashok Khemka

On his last day as Haryana’s Director (Sports), before being transferred to another department, IAS officer Jagdeep Singh, issued a Grade-A sports gradation certificate for his son endorsing latter’s alleged “misrepresented sports achievements”. Based on the same certificate, the IAS officer’s son Vishwajeet Singh, an international-rank shooter, is now seeking entry into the coveted Haryana Civil Services (HCS)-Executive cadre under sports quota.

Now, Haryana’s former Principal Secretary (Sports), Ashok Khemka, has raised the red flag on Vishwajeet’s case, citing the alleged anomalies in his gradation certificate. Seeking a stern action on the “misconduct” and “criminal offences” allegedly committed by the father-son duo, Khemka has written to the state government, explaining the “modus operandi” of the “fraud”.

The Grade-A sports gradation certificate – HRPK-16/0002 – was issued to Vishwajeet on June 12, 2018. Jagdeep Singh, as Director (Sports), was the final signatory. The same day, Jagdeep was transferred out of sports department. He relinquished charge the next day. An year later, in July 2019, Vishwajeet used the same Grade-A certificate to take the HCS Main examination (organised by the

Haryana Public Service Commission) under the Eligible Sportspersons (ESP) quota of the state government. He was declared successful for appointment to the HCS (Executive) on December 19, 2019.

For getting the Grade-A certificate, Vishwajeet mentioned that he won “silver medal” in International Shooting Sports Federation (ISSF) Junior Cup that was held from May 26, 2014 to June 1, 2014 in Suhl, Germany. He added that ISSF was the “organizing authority” of the championship.

Khemka, after conducting a probe, claims to have found that it was not ISSF, but the Deutsche Schutzenbund eV (DSB), the German national shooting federation, that organized the championship. Khemka has also found that Vishwajeet’s individual ranking in the event was 16th and the “silver medal” claimed by him was given to the Indian team on the basis of three contestants’ aggregate score.

The result of the ISSF Junior Cup held in May 2014, in which Vishwajeet participated, is also mentioned on DSB’s website and not on ISSF’s website. However, details of all the other events that ISSF organized 2015 onwards are mentioned on ISSF’s website.

ISSF’s website also mentions achievements of all the athletes who had participated in its championships. In Vishwajeet’s case, there are only three achievements mentioned against his name and ISSF Junior Cup-2014 does not figure among those.

“Vishwajeet Singh has wrongly shown ISSF as the organizing authority in his application form so as to be considered against a tournament placed in a higher category,” Khemka has written in his letter to the HPSC chairman.

“Since the organizing authority of the ISSF Junior Cup-2014 was not ISSF, the tournament did not qualify for sports gradation under the notification of May 25, 2018. Moreover, the revised notification of November 15, 2018 completely foreclosed all international tournaments, other than World Cup/ championship, for sports gradation. The ISSF Junior Cup was not a World Cup tournament,” Khemka added.

Regarding the silver medal, as claimed by Vishwajeet while seeking the Grade-A sports gradation certificate, Khemka wrote, “Vishwajeet Singh scored 16th rank in 25m Sport Pistol Men Junior event. The medal was not given on a team game. The medal was based on team score obtained by aggregating the individual scores of three shooters representing the country in the individual event. The three shooters representing India ranked 3rd, 15th and 16th in the individual event. A medal given in this manner does not qualify for the benefit of enhanced gradation available to a medal winner. The medal must be won either in individual event or in team game to qualify for enhanced gradation available to medal winners under the scheme”.

“The act is blatant nepotism and constitutes various offences under the Indian Penal Code and the Prevention of Corruption Act, involving abuse of public office for wrongful gains. Talks alone will not suffice. Abusers of public offices, after being caught, manage to hoodwink their misconduct by readily crawling before the masters who then make such public servants their private servants always ready to serve them at their beck and call. Timely action is our duty and is the real deterrent against such frauds by those who occupy public offices,” Khemka added.

While Vishwajeet did not respond to the calls, Jagdeep Singh maintained that the certificate issued by him to his son was “genuine”.

Responding to The Indian Express’s queries, Jagdeep Singh said, “There are 10-15 officials in the ISSF. They do not go to each and every place to organize tournaments. Rather, ISSF authorizes national federations to hold tournaments. ISSF was the organizing authority for the ISSF Junior Cup-2014. There is nothing wrong with the certificate and there is no misrepresentation by Vishwajeet. We are ready to face any probe. The state government can get it verified from the concerned agencies”.

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