SAC Powerless To Take Suo Moto Note: Chief

“Cases Transferred to Vigilance Gathering Dust”

SRINAGAR: The State Accountability Commission (SAC), constituted to deal with corruption at high levels, including ministers, has ruled out taking suo moto notice of the recently-surfaced spurious drugs scam in Kashmir, saying that the government had divested it of such powers.

“We don’t have any suo moto powers right now,” the chairman of the SAC. Justice (retd) YP Nargotra, said. “The government has withdrawn such powers.”

“If, however, a complaint in connection with the drugs scam is filed with the Commission, we will definitely act,” he said.

“We had appealed against the government decision (on suo moto powers), but the High Court upheld it,” the SAC chief said.

Justice Nargotra, however, dispelled the notion that the Crime Branch of the police could not investigate a serving minister or politician facing a criminal case.

“The crime branch can open an investigation against any politician or minister if it is a criminal case,” he said.

He also said that cases the already transferred to the State Vigilance Organisation were gathering dust in the SVO’s office because of  non availability of staff.

“There are various cases that have already been transferred by virtue of statuary powers to the SVO, but the files are still lying with SAO, because they don’t have the staff to receive those files,.” Justice Nargotra said.

“The investigation process of these cases has been halted,” he said.

According to sources, 282 among the total 458 anti-graft cases with the SAC have been transferred to the vigilance

Justice Nargotra said that all serving ministers, whose cases were lying with the Commission, had got stay orders from the High Court.

“At least two cases of former ministers have been decided by the High Court,” he said.

 

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