Policy

15 more senior tax officials forced into retirement by Centre for alleged graft

Our Bureau New Delhi | Updated on June 18, 2019 Published on June 18, 2019

In 8 days, 27 officials have been shown the door

The government on Tuesday issued marching orders to 15 senior tax officials on account of alleged corruption charges. With this the total number of senior tax officials shown the door has gone up to 27 in eight days. All the officials are from the Indian Revenue Service.

The last set of officials told to retire was from the Income Tax Department, while this time, senior officials with ranks such as Principal Commissioner and Assistant Commissioner, dealing with indirect taxes, have been asked to leave.

Also read: Sacking of 12 senior officers raises hackles in I-T Dept

According to the Finance Ministry, these officials are Anup Srivastava (Principal Commissioner), Atul Dikshit (Commissioner), Sansar Chand (Commissioner), G Sree Harsha (Commissisoner), Vinay Brij Singh (Commissioner) and ten others.

Rule 56

Orders issued by the Finance Ministry have quoted clause J of rule 56 of the Fundamental Rules. Based on this rule, the President retires these officials with immediate effect.

Rule 56 covers Group ‘A & B’ officers who entered service before 35 years of age and have attained 50 years of age.

A review is carried out on a quarterly basis, including of officials and employees facing serious allegations of corruption. If the review committee finds the allegations to be true, it recommends compulsory retirement and the order is then signed by the President.

The compulsorily retired officials will be paid a sum equivalent to their pay and allowances for thee months, calculated at the same rate at which s/he was drawing them immediately before retirement.

Such an action is considered as a penalty and the government believes that it will act as a deterrent for others flirting with corruption.

At present, the retirement age is 60 years. The loss of 10 years of service means loss in terms of the benefits and perks for that period and, more importantly, a lifelong loss of honour.

CBI cases

There are serious charges against these officials. For example, according to sources, the CBI registered a case against Principal Commissioner Anup Srivastava alleging that he had entered into a criminal conspiracy to favour a realtor and obtain illegal gratification.

Another case against the Principal Commissioner by the CBI alleges bribery by an importer to cover up a case of duty evasion. Srivastava was arrested in 2012 and subsequently released on bail.

Similarly, there are two CBI cases against Commissioner Atul Dixit and he was under suspension. Sansar Chand, G Sree Harsha and Vinay Brij Singh also face CBI cases.

Others being prosecuted by the central investigative agency are Additional Commisoners Ashok R Mahida, Virendra Agarwal and Raju Sekar, Deputy Commissioners Amresh Jain and Ashok Aswal, Joint Commisioner Nalin Kumar, and Assistant Commissioners SS Pabana, SS Bisht, and Ashok Aswal.

Assistant Commissioner Vinod Sanga faces charges related to the clearance of two consignments of over-invoiced goods without making efforts to ascertain the correct market value of the goods and drawing samples despite there being specific instructions regarding verification of the declared value and examination of the packets.

Assistant Commissioner Mohammed Altaf is alleged to be the mastermind and investor in smuggling of Red Sanders in two cases.

 

Published on June 18, 2019

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