In a much shocking decision that was announced recently by the newly formed NDA government, led by Prime Minister Narendra Modi, twelve taxation officers have been ordered to retire 'forcefully' from their posts. The most shocking part of this decision comes from the designations that these twelve taxation officers held. In this astonishing move, the Narendra Modi led government struck out the top officials in a heavy number. In his election campaign for both the tenures, from 2014 to 2019, Narendra Modi has been speaking blatantly and promisingly of eradicating corruption out of India. Taking ahead his promissory note and being firm over his anti-corruption measures, the government has taken this step.
The ranks of these officers range from Principal Commissioners, Chief Commissioners, and Commissioners of Income Tax. This is also being looked upon as the swachata drive of PM’s second tenure, this time targeting the corruption existing in various ministries. Finance Ministry is the first one amidst all to face this surgical strike by the NDA government in power.
The positive side of this move, as viewed by the general public, is the evacuation of controversial and illegally engaged officers from dominant and stature driven posts in the Finance Ministry. It has been reported that the officials were allegedly involved in controversies pertaining to cases of disproportionate and illegal assets, sexual harassment and involvement in corruption.
The forceful and compulsory retirement as imposed in this condition is with respect to the Fundamental Rule 56 (j) relating to the Central Civil Services (Pension) Rule. The rule states compulsion in the retirement of civil servants when ordered by the central government. This rule has not been taken into action frequently, but it surely is not the first time for this to be inculcated practically.
Many prominent members of the ministry have been named, which include S. K. Shrivastava (Commissioner posted in Noida, also an IRS officer) who has been accused of sexual harassment charges by two women with commissioner ranks. Ashok Agrawal is yet another big name of Joint Commissioner Rank who has been forcefully removed pertaining to the grave complaints of corruption. Besides these, two other officers- Homi Rajvansh (IRS,1985) and B. B. Rajendra Prasad are on the list too. Mr. Rajvansh is involved in acquiring immovable assets, accounting to Rs. 3 crores in the name of his family. Also, Mr. Prasad has been included in this list due to the obtainment of illegal favour in an appeal for the sake of gratification. This move by the NDA government is being looked upon as a corrective measure that Prime Minister Narendra Modi intends to take against the much-discussed corruption prevailing in the country since previous governments.
Intolerance towards corruption
It was reported by Association for Democratic Reforms (ADR) that 43% of the newly elected MPs in this elections face criminal charges. And with this move, it looks like a lot is yet to come.