New Delhi: Former AIIMS official Vineet Chaudhary has found himself in a fresh controversy with ruling BJP MP Udit Raj seeking speedy action on an NGO`s complaint against him for "gross misuse of position and wasteful expenditure of public funds".
In a letter to Union Health Minister Harsh Vardhan, the BJP leader referred to the complaint made by the NGO Janhit Abhiyan in September 7, 2012 against the ex-Deputy Director Administration for alleged "abuse of official position, corruption and wasteful expenditure of public funds".
Chaudhary, an IAS officer of 1982 batch belonging to Himachal Pradesh (HP) cadre completed his tenure in AIIMS in November, 2012 and is currently serving as the Additional Chief Secretary in HP government.
The charges included high level corruption in Engineering Wing, heavy misuse of government vehicle, treatment of pet dog at Cancer centre, serious irregularities in various recruitments and lavish expenditure on office renovation.
"The complainant had also highlighted the corruption cases already pending in the Central Vigilance Commission against the said officer. However, even after a lapse of around two years, there is no information available about the status of action taken on the complaint.
"...The said officer had strong protection... And even letters from very serious parliamentarians in this regard, against the officer were totally ignored by the Health Ministry," the letter dated June 6 said.
"It is worthwhile to mention here that in the recently concluded elections, popular mandate was decisively against such corrupt practices of vested interests and therefore speedy action should be taken in such cases," he added.
Raj also attached a copy of the complaint with his letter.
However, Chaudhary had in the past rejected the allegations as "baseless and incorrect".
Rajnarayan, the convenor of the NGO in his letter to the
Chief Vigilance Officer had accused Chaudhary of allegedly favouring few selected companies in giving tenders of construction works related to the institute to the tune of Rs 100 crores as well as spending more than Rs 20 lakh on the furniture and fittings for his office.
He also accused Chaudhary of "getting his pet dog treated into radiology department of Rotary Cancer Hospital of AIIMA, that too even on a holiday."
The complaint further alleged that in the sector of recruitment, "the interview portion was given disproportionate weightage, so as to ensure the selection of predetermined candidates."
JD(U) chief Sharad Yadav had also raised the issue before in the Parliament demanding an enquiry into the matter.
In a related case of corruption in the engineering wing, where the head of engineering wing of AIIMs was allegedly given one year extension by flouting rules and regulations and large scale financial irregularities were also reported. The Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) has already registered a case against Chaudhary.