Shunted out for ‘exposing scams’: Haryana IAS officer

Without naming anyone,the officer also claimed that he had been threatened with more transfers.

Written by Varinder Bhatia | Chandigarh | Published: October 12, 2012 10:10:50 pm

A SENIOR Haryana IAS officer has accused the state government of punishing him with frequent transfers for what he says is ‘exposing scams’ and hinting at an alleged corrupt nexus between politicians and bureaucrats.

The officer,Dr Ashok Khemka,has strongly hit out at the state government in a letter sent to chief secretary P K Chaudhery on Friday,a day after he was transferred from his job of Director-General (Consolidations) under the revenue ministry and posted as managing director,Haryana Seeds Development Corporation.

Khemka was DG (Consolidations) for about three months. Before that,he was managing director of state government electronics firm Hartron for about 50 days. The 1991-batch officer has been transferred more than 40 times in his career.

In his letter to Chaudhery,Khemka has called his transfer as “deliberate and malafide” to punish him “due to some vested elements in the political-bureaucratic hierarchy affected by the exposure of the scams in consolidation under the garb of exercise of powers under section 42 of the Consolidation Act”.

“Several hundred crores worth of panchayat lands were transferred to realtor companies,which were created a few days earlier. Forest and hill areas were sought to be partitioned under the garb of consolidation to corner prime plots near highways to build farm-houses or resorts,” Khemka has written. “Panchayats also lost huge lands in consolidation by deliberate under-valuation. It is grossly unfair to punish me for being upright and exposing the scams and corrupt acts instead of taking action against the guilty.”

Without naming anyone,the officer also claimed that he had been threatened with more transfers.

“I am threatened that I would be subjected to transfer every month so as to humiliate and demoralise me and create road blocks for regular and timely release of salary (sic). My family feels threatened due to certain vested elements whose interests were adversely affected by the exposure of scams in this department. I plead for security and fixed tenure in a cadre post befitting my seniority,” Khemka adds in the letter.

The chief secretary,however,rejected Khemka’s charges. “It’s a incorrect perception of the officer that the government has punished him for exposing scams,” Chaudhery told The Indian Express. “Transfers and postings are the prerogative of the state government. There is nothing wrong in it.”

Sources said that as DG (Consolidations),Khemka had raised questions about the transfer of prime chunks of gram panchayat land in Gurgaon and other parts of Haryana to builders and private parties. This caused the Punjab and Haryana High Court to cancel all such transfers,calling it a “mammoth fraud”. Khemka had also recommended to the state government that a CBI probe be ordered to unearth what he said was a politician-bureaucrat nexus in the state.

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