New Delhi: Key Team Anna member Arvind Kejriwal, Thursday, sent a cheque of Rs 9.27 lakh – to clear his dues - to Prime Minister Manmohan Singh so that his resignation from the Indian Revenue Service is accepted.
In a letter enclosed with the cheque, Kejriwal said that his move to clear the dues does not imply that he was guilty in anyway and that he was clearing the dues in protest. Ideally he should have sent the cheque to the Income Tax department.
Kejriwal further wrote that he has taken a loan from six friends to make up for the money required to clear the dues.
He also claimed that government machinery is being used to target Anna Hazare and the movement started by him.
"I do not know my fault so there is no question of accepting it. I am depositing the amount under protest. I will be grateful if you advise the finance ministry to accept my resignation at the earliest," Kejriwal said.
He said that he had a right to move court to recover the money once his resignation was accepted.
Kejriwal said he tried to explain to the authorities in the past five years that he had not violated rules but they were "not ready to understand".
Kejriwal, who was a senior Income Tax official, had taken study leave on full pay for two years from November 01, 2000 and rejoined in 2002 after signing a bond that he would return the salary if he resigns or retires or fails to resume duty within three years of his study leave.
The Office of the Chief Commissioner of Income Tax (CCIT) had on August five issued a notice to Kejriwal asking him to pay Rs 9.27 lakh claiming that he had violated bond clauses under which he went on a study leave for two years. The social activist was asked to deposit the money.
When the Delhi CCIT had written to him in 2007 and 2008 for clearance of his dues, Kejriwal had responded that they may be waived.
I-T officials had said that they can initiate property attachment proceedings under service rules and subsequently, initiate criminal case against a person who defaults on dues.
The activist, who was awarded the Ramon Magsaysay Award for emergent leadership in 2006, said: "I have been told that my file was also considered in the prime minister`s office and I have been found guilty."
He said to pay the money he took a loan from people whom he had known for several years.
"The whole government machinery is after members of Team Anna. I request you with folded hands that your government should not trouble people who had given me loan," Kejriwal said.