Corruption in Indian army is old.
First known case was Jeep scam by V.K.Krishna Menon.
Nehru saved him.
Read some more scams and opinions.
“Back then when Tehelka published Operation Westend, we had repeatedly claimed that what the story really exposed was the systemic rot that had set in; that no matter which Government was in the power, the story would remain the same.”
In what could be a cause of embarrassment for the incumbent Army chief, the Comptroller and Auditor General of India (CAG) has indicted the Chief of Army Staff General VK Singh for alleged misappropriation of funds amounting to Rs 72 lakh in 2007-08.
The CAG‘s audit report finds financial irregularities during Gen Singh’s tenure as 2 Corps Commander. It says that the money sanctioned for repairing buildings was allegedly channelised to construct a new club house.
The Army Headquarters is yet to react to the CAG report but the move would be an embarrassment for the chief who had made clean system and robust health as a plank for his tenure.
The Army chief’s indictment comes days after a retired senior Army officer was taken into custody for his alleged involvement in a ration scam after the CAG reported that soldiers in Siachen were served food unfit for consumption.
Retd Lt Gen SK Sahni faces a court martial for his alleged role in irregularities in procuring meat and dry rations for troops in Siachen and other high altitude areas.
The CAG report, which was tabled in the Parliament on August 3, says soldiers were supplied wheat, rice, pulses and edible oil 28 months past their expiry date. The auditor had also found a serious lack of competition in filing of tenders for the purchase of ration. It even pointed out that a single vendor bagged contracts for more than 36 per cent of the purchases.
The defence ministry may have its hands full with the allegations ofcorruption that have been brought to light by the Army chief, but there is no dearth of scams that could serve to embarrass it even further. Documents available with DNA reveal that a certain Lt Col Gautam Dutta, who was accused of misappropriating the ministry of youth’s funds, was then allowed wrongful use of naval facilities in his capacity as a private operator. Further still, a board of inquiry that was established to investigate these wrongdoings seems to have borne little fruit. Some of those who were seen to have helped Dutta continue his corrupt endeavours have since been implicated in theAdarsh scam, while some have been unfortunately misrepresented and have gone on to receive Drona awards.
The case dates back to May 2005, when Commodore AS Bajwa, the then honorary secretary general of the Yachting Association of India (YAI), had reported an incident of financial impropriety.
Naming Lt Col Dutta of the Army Yachting Node in Mumbai’s Colaba, Bajwa raised issues that ranged from over-invoicing of coach boats, fuel and transportation charges by teams as well as an excess claim of dearness allowance during international participation. Subsequently in August 2005, the Indian Navy constituted a board of inquiry and deduced that there was indeed prima facie evidence of a large scale misappropriation of funds, received from the Ministry of Youth Affairs and Sports. After this report, the cases pertaining to offenders from the Navy were transferred to theIndian Navy and the YAI was given the task of investigating civilians.
But even though he was the only Army officer who had been found guilty of misappropriation, Lt Col Dutta’s case was never referred to the Army Headquarters, nor was any action ever taken. A senior official who spoke on the condition of anonymity, said, “This was mainly due to the fact that Maj Gen Dutta (Retd), his father, had been intimidating the concerned officers with dire consequences.
Lt Col Gautam Dutta’s father, Maj Gen S Dutta, had threatened the inquiry officer Commodore Bajwa for daring to go against his son.”
Further, to avoid inquiry, Lt Col Dutta resigned from the Indian Army toward the end of 2006 and joined his father in selling boats and motor yachts.
Interestingly, Adarsh scam beneficiary Lt Col Tajinder Singh, in his role as General Officer Commanding, Maharashtra, was shielding Lt Col Dutta in the Board of Inquiry from Commodore Bajwa and Captain Rajesh Sarin, the board’s president. Maj Gen Dutta was the legal guardian for Tajinder Singh’s daughter when she was studying in Mumbai, and Singh, for his part, went on to ensure that the Administrative Confidential Report which listed complaints against Lt Col Gautam Dutta were duly hushed.
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