Lodge FIR regarding graft allegations in DGR: HC to CBI

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The Delhi High Court has ordered the CBI to lodge FIRs in connection with allegations of graft by officials of the Directorate General Resettlement (DGR), as claimed in PILs by an ex-serviceman and another person.CourtA bench of Acting Chief Justice Gita Mittal and Justice C Hari Shankar said the incidents of irregularities in the DGR, which deals with providing re-employment to ex-servicemen who are below officer rank, may have “national and international ramifications”.

It also said that registering of a regular case (RC) or FIR, as sought in the pleas, “was essential for doing complete justice and enforcing fundamental and basic rights of the ex-servicemen”.

The petitioners, Lt Col (Retd) Naveen Kumar Anand and Sunil Tripathi, had alleged that jobs registered in the name of bonafide ex-servicemen were in reality being “illegally ventured into” by non-entitled persons, mainly civilians.

The petition claims that the non-entitled persons allegedly impersonated as ex-servicemen by submitting false affidavits and forged documents with the active connivance of DGR officials.

Some officials of DGR have also joined hands for providing undue business to such non-entitled persons at the cost of entitled ex-servicemen and the government exchequer, the petitioners had alleged in their pleas.

The court in its 12-page order noted that the CBI appears to have “merely registered preliminary enquiries” in the matter which “did not culminate into registration of formal FIRs or RCs and no matter was sent up to trial”.

It said that despite the CBI’s prima facie observations supporting the petitioners contentions of graft with regard to DGR functioning, it is “evident that complete steps thereon have not been taken” by the agency.

“In the present case, the instances pointed out by the petitioner have a far-reaching effect. Given the nature of allegations made and the observations of the CBI in its preliminary examination placed before the court in its affidavit of January 27, 2016, it cannot be denied that the present case meets the bar of ‘exceptional situations’ when it is essential to provide credibility and instill confidence in investigations.

“It also cannot be denied that the incident may have national and international ramifications. We are also of the view that grant of the prayer made by the writ petitioner is essential for doing complete justice and enforcing fundamental and basic rights of the ex-servicemen,” the bench said.

It directed the CBI to “immediately” take steps to convert the preliminary enquiries of May 7, May 8 and May 12, 2014, into FIRs or RCs in accordance with law

The agency has also been ordered to ensure that the probe in the matter is expeditiously completed to arrive at a logical conclusion in accordance with law.

“It shall also be ensured that immediate intimation is given by the CBI to the concerned authorities so that valuable documentary evidence is not destroyed or lost in the interregnum,” the bench said and added that a compliance report be filed within three months from July 20.

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