The Delhi High Court has directed the Municipal Corporation of Delhi (MCD) to hand over all relevant documents to the Vigilance Department of the Delhi government to probe the alleged scam relating to ‘ghost’ employees in the civic agency.
The court on Wednesday was responding to the Delhi government’s complaint that the civic body was not handing over any documents on the ground that they had already conducted an inquiry and the report had been finalised. MCD counsel Anoop Bagai told the court that five additional commissioners had conducted an inquiry, finalised the report and sent it to the government for approval.
The counsel said the report will be placed before the court after approval and action as per the law would be taken against errant employees. But the Bench was not impressed.
“What you are doing is just an in-house inquiry. Another statutory authority is asking for documents and you have to give them,” Justice Mukta Gupta said.
The court was hearing a public interest petition filed by an NGO seeking an inquiry by the CBI or an independent agency into the allegation that the MCD was paying salary to over 22,000 gardeners and sweepers, who existed only on paper.
The civic agency maintained that the issue was “blown out of proportion”. It claimed the discrepancy in attendance was due to the biometric attendance system introduced in the MCD.
Its counsel Ajay Arora said the first category of civic employees who could not be accounted for in the biometric attendance system were “substitute employees” whose data was not fed.
The second category consisted of employees who did not submit forms to get registered with the biometric system and the third category was those with flaws in their forms, or who failed to give their thumb impressions, Arora told the court.
“All these employees exist but could not be accounted for,” he said.