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Delhi LG gives nod for ACB probe against ex-dy. Secy.

Mukul Manrai is facing charges under Section (17A) of the Prevention of Corruption Act (PoC Act), 1988 for illegally demanding monetary gratification from a Civil Defence Volunteer (CDV) in lieu of certifying his attendance register.

Anjali | New Delhi |

Delhi Lt. Governor V K Saxena sanctioned Anti Corruption Bureau (ACB) investigation against Mukul Manrai, the then deputy secretary in Chief Minister’s Office (CMO), who was looking after Jan Samvad, Public Grievance Management System (PGMS).

Manrai is facing charges under Section (17A) of the Prevention of Corruption Act (PoC Act), 1988 for illegally demanding monetary gratification from a Civil Defence Volunteer (CDV) in lieu of certifying his attendance register.

Upon being refused his demand by the victim, Manrai wrote to the Civil Defence Office for his removal as a result of which he could not even get his last month’s salary. Manrai is currently working in the Revenue Department.

With hundreds of similar complaints by hapless civil defense volunteers doing the rounds, it appears that Manrai, using the cover provided by CMO, had established a racket of monthly collections out of the payment being made to CDVs. It took a severely and continuously harassed complainant in the extant case to record the conversation regarding demand of money by Manrai and create evidence thereof, for the racket, with CMO as a front to start unravelling.

It may be noted here that the complaint, along with the CD recording as evidence, was received in November, 2017. Since then, it has been moving in circles. Evidently, the accused took advantage of the position and proximity to the CMO to deliberately delay the matter by making the file pointlessly shuffle between the Directorate of Vigilance (DoV), General Administration Department, Administrative Reforms Department and the Education Department. This obviously indicates attempts at delaying the process for benefiting the accused.

Upon receiving a complaint from the victim who had also submitted a CD of video recording, the ACB began an inquiry by sending the CD to the Forensic Science Laboratory (FSL) for authentication. The FSL, which did a frame-by-frame analysis of the video and audio, found it to be unaltered, untampered and genuine. The ACB also submitted a transcript of the conversation, provided by FSL, between the victim and the accused.

Finally, the DoV, after having gone through the evidence put on record by ACB, found that the then Dy. Secretary in CMO abused his ‘official position for pecuniary gains’ and recommended for investigation in the matter by ACB. Having been satisfied with the evidence provided on file, the Lt. Governor has since granted approval for investigation by the ACB on priority.