Dimapur, November 4: The Nagaland Vigilance Commission has began probe into corruption in the State Tourism Department after taking cognizance of the issue of corruption, nepotism and favouritism in the department raised by the People for Democratic Rights (PDR).
The SVC is also inquiring into the Legal Metrology & Consumer Protection (LMCP) Department taking cognizance of illegal appointments in the department as highlighted by the PDR.
Tourism Dept: The PDR alleged that the daughter of a former Commissioner & Secretary, Tourism was appointed through backdoor as Tourist Officer, and her case along with several other cases are already under investigation by the Vigilance Commission.
The daughter of a former Commissioner & Secretary, Tourism had recently cleared the NPSC 2017 exam as Assistant Archivist in the Department of Art & Culture, PDR said while calling upon the Department of Art & Culture not to issue appointment letter to the candidate (Asst Archivist) unless her name is cleared by the Vigilance investigation. It also urged the NPSC to take note of the case and take necessary action.
“Any in-service government servant, if he/she happens to be under Police/Vigilance investigation or any Inquiry for any reason, his/her promotion, appointment or retirement benefits are also withheld until his/her case/position is cleared through the investigation or inquiry. No person under Police/Vigilance investigation or any inquiry for any reason is also not given any government appointment unless or until his/her case/position is cleared through the investigation or inquiry,” PDR said.
LMCP Dept: On Legal Metrology & Consumer Protection (LMCP) Department, PDR alleged that an officer is trying to promote his daughter to the post of Assistant Controller following the demise of the senior most Assistant Controller of the Department in October 2018.
The officer concerned, PDR claimed, is the same officer who the PDR had earlier cautioned to stop lobbying with influential and powerful persons including a former Vigilance Commissioner to get a clean chit.
“Even after cautioning him to stop such lobby and allow the Vigilance investigation take a clear and fair stand into the issue, the same officer is now trying to promote his daughter to the post of Assistant Controller,” it claimed.
The PDR said the appointment of his daughter as Assistant Inspector was with effect from 01-11-2010 (appointment order issued on 04-11-2010) and promoted to Inspector on 01-03-2011 within a span of 3 months even before completing the required regularization period. The case is also under Vigilance investigation, it said.
The PDR reiterated that a person whose name is currently under vigilance investigation should not be recommended for promotion unless the case is cleared by the vigilance. “With her earlier appointment and promotion having been orchestrated under high profile case of nepotism and favouritism, PDR points out that there are four candidates who got selected through NPSC in the year 2015 and they deserve promotion more than her as they came out through open competitive exam,” it said.
The PDR also reminded that there are two more senior Inspectors who were appointed way back in 2004 and 2005 and they also deserves promotion more than the officer’s daughter. It cautioned the officer who will be retiring next year to stop all sorts of objectionable lobby both within and outside the department/government.
At the same time, the PDR reiterated its demand to the Government to send the incumbent HoD, LMCP on leave so that the Vigilance Commission can conduct a free and fair inquiry and bring the issues to its logical conclusion.
The PDR said it draws huge hope from the message of the Chief Minister who said that the PDA government would try to bring out a comprehensive zero tolerance policy towards corruption just few days back on the eve of the Vigilance Awareness Week.
Governor, PB Acharya had also called upon the State Vigilance Commission, as the apex anti-corruption institution of the State, to promote transparency and accountability and maintain integrity in public life.
If the vigilance investigation is found unsatisfactory, the PDR warned that it will not hesitate to seek proper and effective legal redressal in the two departments. (Page News Service)