Fresh trouble brewed for former railway minister Pawan Kumar Bansal as the CBI on Wednesday launched a fresh probe against his private secretary Rahul Bhandari – an IAS officer of 1997 batch from Punjab cadre — and nephew Vijay Singla on charges of seeking money for favourable transfers and postings in the ministry.
In a separate preliminary enquiry into irregularities in awarding of railway contracts, the agency named Kulbhushan, member (electrical) of the railway board as one of the accused. Kulbhushan holds the rank of secretary to the government and was tipped to become chairman of the railway board.
Both the probes are offshoot of the main cash for postings scam in which railway board member (staff) Kumar was arrested for paying R90 lakh to Singla. The CBI alleges Kumar wanted to take Kulbhushan’s post when he would have become chairman.
“We suspect that Bhandari and Kulbhushan were running their personal fiefdoms during Bansal’s tenure. Bhandari’s role is under the lens for transfers and postings in the rail coach factory at Kapurthala, Punjab and Chitranjan Loco Works, West Bengal. Kulbhushan is alleged to have relaxed norms to help a builder get a contract for developing railway land,” said a CBI official.