Skip to main content

Ex-official: Murmu, appointed as CAG, will 'surely' perform shradh of the institution

GC Murmu (middle) with Modi: 2014
Counterview Desk
A former senior official of the Comptroller and Auditor General of India (CAG), Shantanu Basu, in a Facebook comment in the wake of the appointment of GC Murmu, a Gujarat IAS cadre official of the 1985, has raised doubts about the independence of CAG following the Government of India move.
Citing an example how way back in 2010 the process of undermining CAG had begun, Basu, who has been actively commenting on financial issues on his Facebook timeline, believes that while CAG’s “cremation” had happened under Murmu’s processor, all that is left for the new appointee, known to be close to Prime Minister Narendra Modi ever since the latter’s Gujarat days, is to perform the organization’s “shradh”.

Text:

During a routine technical inspection of an audit office in Delhi in 2010, I came across yet another case of evident mega malfeasance. The state-owned Power Grid Corporation of India Limited (PGCIL) had entered into a joint venture with a private company to set up a thermal power plant/piped natural gas (TPP/PNG)-powered plant in Haryana, sometime in 2007-08.
The Cabinet Committee on Economic Affairs (CCEA) approval provided for implementation of the project on BOOT basis. PGCIL's share of the project cost was over Rs 8000 crore. This approval of CCEA was amended on file by the then Union Power Secretary, a Haryana cadre IAS officer, to remove the T-transfer after completion of the 30-year period specified in the agreement with the private party.
In effect, a measly IAS officer amended the approval of a committee headed the Prime Minister that itself ought to have merited dismissal from service. Instead, the project went on till the audit office objected to it on the above ground. The issue was marked for inclusion in one of CAG's annual commercial audit reports.
This objection was reviewed by CAG and the then deputy CAG (commercial) closed this objection without assigning any reason whatever. A few weeks later, the then chief vigilance commissioner (CVC) wrote to the then CAG (Vinod Rai, who was a bosom pal of the Power Secretary) seeking reasons why the objection was closed by audit.
Even though the file was under my inspection, it was recalled by the audit office and submitted to the same deputy CAG for further action, “as discussed''. The file was returned within two days to the audit office.
On that file there was a copy of a reply from Vinod Rai to the CVC denying that the objection was ever closed. The file was suitably tailored with all officers of the audit office being coerced to replace the full noting in mater of just 2-3 hours.
I had kept a copy of the original notes and realized the difference when the audit office returned the file to me. Nonetheless, I included this issue with my findings (with a copy of the original notes). The report was never referred to the audit office for replies/compliance, indeed probably destroyed.
Today when I find GC Murmu appointed as CAG, I despair, since he will certainly perform the “shradh” of the CAG's institution, his predecessor, Rajiv Mehrishi having carried out its cremation by not reporting his findings for three long years.
RB Sreekumar, who was in-charge of the State Intelligence Bureau (SIB) from April 9, 2002 to September 17, 2002, made a charge in his third affidavit to the Justice Nanavati Commission, constituted to probe the Godhra train burning incident and the riots that followed. He alleged that in a meeting held on August 24, 2004, Murmu had “unauthorisedly tutored, intimidated, forced and pressured” him to depose in favour of the state government during his impending cross examination before the commission on August 31. 
Sreekumar
Making a special mention of Murmu, Sreekumar had submitted that he had been “authorised and entrusted with the task of tutoring and briefing government officials deposing before the Nanavati Commission by the highest authorities of the government and Home Department.”
That is why, he reasoned, Murmu, who belonged to the 1985 batch of IAS, had “dared to summon me, a 1971 batch officer in IPS, holding the rank of additional DGP/additional secretary, Government of India. One who listens to the recorded audio tape of the meeting can get convinced that Shri Murmu has talked to me with an authoritative posture without even observing the conventional etiquette followed in interaction with senior officials of All India Services.”
That was not all. According to Sreekumar, Murmu had even spoken about how he had briefed an even more senior IAS officer, Ashok Narayan (1966 batch), who was the State Vigilance Commissioner and a former additional chief secretary – and who happened to be the senior-most serving IAS officer in the state.
“Such a posture by Shri Murmu is possible only if he has the specific support and clearance from the higher authorities in the government, i.e. the Hon’ble Home Minister / the Hon’ble Chief Minister,” Sreekumar had submitted.
Need I say anything more about Modi sarkar's integrity?

Comments

Vary said…
Thanks for bringing this to the general masses. The sudden manner of Mr. Murmu's replacement with a political figure as LG J&K and now being made the CAG India speaks very badly about the integrity of the democratic institutions in the country.

TRENDING

'Wedding of the century': What does Mukesh Ambani want to prove by such extravaganza?

By NS Venkataraman*  Mukesh  Ambani,   a renowned Indian industrialist who is said to be the richest person in India and  one of the richest persons in the world,   has just now conducted the wedding celebration of  his son in Mumbai,   with unheard level of lavishness in India.

A Hindu alternative to Valentine's Day? 'Shiv-Parvati was first love marriage in Universe'

By Rajiv Shah*   The other day, I was searching on Google a quote on Maha Shivratri which I wanted to send to someone, a confirmed Shiv Bhakt, quite close to me -- with an underlying message to act positively instead of being negative. On top of the search, I chanced upon an article in, imagine!, a Nashik Corporation site which offered me something very unusual. 

Swami Vivekananda's views on caste and sexuality were 'painfully' regressive

By Bhaskar Sur* Swami Vivekananda now belongs more to the modern Hindu mythology than reality. It makes a daunting job to discover the real human being who knew unemployment, humiliation of losing a teaching job for 'incompetence', longed in vain for the bliss of a happy conjugal life only to suffer the consequent frustration.

'28% rise in sedition cases': Top global NGO alliance rates India's civil space 'repressed'

By Rajiv Shah Rating India's civic space as repressed , Civicus, a global civil society alliance, in its new report submitted to the UN Human Rights Committee (UNHRC) on the state of civic space in the country has said that the use of sedition law against the Modi government’s critics continues. "Under the government of Prime Minister Narendra Modi, sedition cases have increased by 28 per cent with over 500 cases against more than 7,000 people", it says.

'Modi govt's assault on dissent': Foreign funds of top finance NGO blocked

By Rajiv Shah  In a surprise move, the Ministry of Home Affairs, Government of India, has cancelled the foreign funding license of the well-known advocacy group, Centre for Financial Accountability (CFA), known for critically examining India's finance and banking sectors from human rights and environmental angle.

How US is using Tibetans to provoke conflict with China 'ignoring' India

By Lobsang Tenzin*  On July 12, US President Joe Biden signed the Resolve Tibet Act, and Tibetans cheered for it, believing that the law promotes a resolution of the dispute between Tibet and China. Is this true? First, let's look at the issue of the ownership of Tibet. 

How embracing diversity enriched my life, brought profound sense of joy

By Mike Ghouse*  If you can shed the bias towards others, you'll love the connections with every human that God or his systems have created. This gives a sense of freedom and brings meaning and joy to life. Embracing and respecting how people dress, eat, and practice their beliefs becomes an enriching experience.

Post-poll mob lynching spree, bulldozer justice: NAPM seeks united resistance

Counterview Desk  Condemning what it calls "the horrific spree of mob lynchings across the country after the Lok Sabha election results", India's premier civil society network, National Alliance of People’s Movements (NAPM), has called for "united resistance" against "hateful communal politics, mob lynching of religious minorities and caste-based oppression".

Maharashtra govt's proposed bill may be used against 'dissenting' journalists, writers, filmmakers, artists

Counterview Desk  The People’s Union for Civil Liberties (PUCL), Maharashtra, strongly objecting to what it calls “repressive and unconstitutional” Maharashtra Special Public Security Bill 2024, has demanded the proposed law be scrapped in its entirety. In its Statement of Objects and Reasons for the Bill, PUCL noted,  the broad and non-descript label of ‘urban naxal’ has been used, which is actually a “common slur used for any citizen who expresses their opposition to state policy or is not aligned with right-wing majoritarian views."