Then Himachal Pradesh governor Urmila Singh recommended stern action against officials of the state government and the state vigilance and anti-corruption bureau for concealing facts in a case of nepotism against former chief minister Prem Kumar Dhumal.
The state government had on January 4 sought sanction from Urmila Singh to prosecute Dhumal. However, she turned down the government’s request on January 20, mentioning that it was for it (government) to decide on the matter and recommended major penalty against officers of the state government, the bureau and prosecutors for ‘concealing’ certain facts.
She also asked the government to inform the governor’s office about action taken on her recommendations.
The case dates back to 2007 and was probed by the special investigating unit of the vigilance and anti-corruption bureau. It was in June last year that the government booked Dhumal along with former chief secretary Rajiv Dhingra, former additional chief secretary PC Kapoor and AN Sharma, the ‘beneficiary’ IPS officer.
Urmila Singh, whose term expired on January 24, was replaced by Rajasthan governor Kalyan Singh, who was given additional charge of Himachal Pradesh. Kalyan Singh and Urmila Singh represented the Bharatiya Janata Party and Congress during their political careers, respectively.
As per the case, AN Sharma had moved an application on November 21, 2007, seeking voluntary retirement as he was in the reckoning for a BJP ticket from Nadaun segment in Hamirpur, but after the ticket was given to Vijay Agnihotri, Sharma wrote to the department for continuation of services.
Sharma also moved the Central Administrative Tribunal (CAT) for a stay on the process of his retirement on the basis of his application. After the CAT granted the stay, Sharma withdrew his application and applied for continuation of service, which was allowed in 2008 by then Dhumal-led state government.