Transfer act: Move to keep six departments out triggers row | dehradun | Hindustan Times
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Transfer act: Move to keep six departments out triggers row

The Uttarakhand government’s move to exclude some half-a-dozen departments, including the flush-with-funds excise department from the ambit of the Transfer Act, is motivated by corruption, the Opposition Congress on Sunday alleged

dehradun Updated: Jun 10, 2018 21:59 IST
Deep Joshi
Deep Joshi
Hindustan Times, Dehradun
The Congress says the government proposal is political and motivated by graft; the BJP cites ‘departmental needs’ and ease of governance. (Above) Excise minister Prakash Pant.(HT Photo)

The Uttarakhand government’s move to exclude some half-a-dozen departments, including the flush-with-funds excise department from the ambit of the Transfer Act, is motivated by corruption, the Opposition Congress on Sunday alleged.

Excise minister Prakash Pant confirmed that a move is afoot to exclude some half-a-dozen departments from the ambit of the Transfer Act. He, however, claimed that the move is legally valid.

The Congress, however, stuck to its guns. “The way the half-a-dozen departments are being excluded from the Transfer Act shows that the entire BJP government is involved in corruption,” said state party vice president Jot Singh Bisht.

The move will let the ruling party appoint officials of its choice in those departments and rake in moolah, Bisht alleged. He said the way the key departments were being allowed to frame separate transfer policies “puts a serious question mark on the government’s move” to enact the Transfer Act.

While enacting the Act days after it formed government last year, BJP had claimed that its objective was to remove corruption in transfers and postings of officials, Bisht said. The move to allow six key departments to formulate separate transfer policies “militates against the very spirit” of that law, Bisht said adding, “The move also flies in the face of chief minister Trivendra Singh Rawat’s repeated claims of policy of zero tolerance for corruption.”

Bisht said the health department, headed by the CM, too is being excluded from the ambit of the Transfer Act. “The government submitted a proposal for a separate draft transfer policy to be formulated by the health department and then duly approved it,” the Congress leader said.

The excise department too recently submitted a draft transfer policy to the state government for approval, Bisht said, adding that once approved, the government will dole out plum posts to the officials of its choice. “It goes without saying that the arrangement will also benefit the (political) bosses of the officials getting the plum positions.”

Pant, however, said there was nothing political in the decision. “For instance, to check corruption in the excise department, we need to transfer its officials within one or two years, so that they don’t develop contacts with liquor traders,” he said, adding, as per the Transfer Act, the government can’t transfer officials before a period of three years. “Similarly, in view of the acute paucity of doctors in the hills we need to transfer them frequently, as per the requirement, which necessitated a separate transfer policy.”

On the Congress’ allegations that separate transfer policies will lead to corruption Pant dared the Opposition to either “furnish proof or prove its allegations in the court of law.”