Raids by the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) on the residence of R A Yadav, chairman of the All India Council of Technical Education (AICTE) yielded fixed deposits worth Rs 1.4 crore and other investments worth Rs 63 lakh here on Friday.
Yadav however told HT, “I had all this money before I joined AICTE. I can account for all the documents. The Human Resource Development (HRD) Ministry had conducted an independent inquiry earlier this year and had given me a clean chit,” he said.
The CBI also carried out raids on the houses and offices of four other top officials of the council and seized “huge amounts by way of fixed deposit receipts, cash, incriminating documents and a blank signed visit reports to various institutions for approval,” the agency’s spokesperson, Harsh Bhal said.
The CBI’s anti-corruption branch had had registered corruption cases against Yadav and the four officials.
Following Friday’s raids, the government is likely to hasten the process to remove Yadav from his post.
The HRD Ministry may axe Yadav from the chairman’s post as soon as the CBI files a chargesheet against him, said a government official who did not want to be named.
A final decision, however, will have to be taken at the level of the Appointments Committee of Cabinet, which is the decision-making authority.
Yadav’s appointment as chairman last year was hugely controversial – with the Prime Minister’s Office keeping the file pending for months and finally giving in to the then HRD Minister Arjun Singh. Yadav, as vice chairman of AICTE between 2005 and 2008, had come under a cloud for allegedly indulging in irregularities.
The charges against him included simultaneously drawing a government pension and a salary while serving as AICTE vice chairman and granting approvals to some technical institutes run by his relatives.
With HRD Minister Kapil Sibal’s backing to clean up higher education, the CBI had on Thursday arrested AICTE member secretary K. Narayan Rao for demanding and accepting a bribe of Rs 5 lakh.