HC tells Punjab to notify SIT for probing case
The Punjab government has been directed by the Punjab and Haryana high court to issue a notification empowering the two-member special investigating team (SIT) at the earliest so as to probe the Punjab Public Service Commission's (PPSC's) job-for-cash scam in the recruitment of 312 medical officers in 2008-09.chandigarh Updated: Dec 18, 2013 19:34 IST
The Punjab government has been directed by the Punjab and Haryana high court to issue a notification empowering the two-member special investigating team (SIT) at the earliest so as to probe the Punjab Public Service Commission's (PPSC's) job-for-cash scam in the recruitment of 312 medical officers in 2008-09.
The court directed the SIT to submit its initial report by March 5. The state government has been ordered to provide the required facilities, including office space, secretarial staff, residential accommodation etc. to the SIT comprising retired Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) joint director MS Bali and Punjab vigilance bureau (VB) chief director Suresh Arora.
The division bench comprising chief justice Sanjay Kishan Kaul and justice Augustine George Masih also fixed Bali's remuneration as Rs 1.75 lakh per month. The state government has also been directed to consider providing a Rs 10 lakh corpus fund to the VB for meeting various expenses, as sought by the SIT members.
Bali as well as Arora were present in the court during the case hearing on Wednesday. They submitted their report to the court, mentioning the course of investigation they intended to undertake and informed that initially a preliminary inquiry would be conducted in about four months' time, which would decide the further course of action.
The SIT members informed the court that in order to complete the probe in a time-bound manner, it would require an operational team of one inspector general of police, four superintendents of police, three deputy superintendents of police, and around 40 other police officials. The names of these officers would be informed to the court soon, it was submitted. The SIT expects to be functional by the first week of January.
'Not on merit'
The vigilance bureau, directed by the Punjab chief minister to probe the case, had submitted a scathing inquiry report to the high court in January 2011, clearly pointing out that the recruitment of medical officers was made on "considerations other than merit." In the selection made during Sanjit Kumar Sinha's tenure as the PPSC chairman, many candidates with an excellent track record were ignored by the commission. Till date, no FIR had been registered in the case and selected candidates are continuing in service.