New Delhi: Agitated over CBI`s FIR which named former Coal Secretary P C Parakh as an accused in the Coalgate scam, central IAS officers` association has decided to approach highest authorities in the government to ensure necessary safeguards for bureaucrats who make honest decisions.
"We are going to give our representation at the highest level in the government. Officers who are honest and made honest decisions in public interest should not be hounded. Necessary safeguards need to be there," central IAS officers` association secretary Sanjay R Bhoos Reddy said.
In the present regime, an officer can be booked by investigating agencies for making a decision which benefits a company or individuals, he said.
"All members of the associations are agitated over it. If somebody is corrupt, hang him at the lamp post. But the honest must be protected," Reddy said.
"We will be meeting Prime Minister, Minister of State for Personnel, Cabinet Secretary and Secretary, Department of Personnel and Training and will give representation to them. If need be, we will meet President Pranab Mukherjee," he said.
The Association members yesterday held meeting to discuss issue of Parakh.
The IAS officers body, which has also recently changed its constitution to cover all IAS officers working in central and state government departments across the country, said they wanted the same safeguards for members of other services like Indian Police Service (IPS) and Indian Forest Service (IFoS).
IPS and IFoS associations have also rallied behind Parakh.
IPS officers` Association has suggested a provision of compensation for a retired bureaucrat who is named in a case and later found not guilty by a court or any such competent authority.
"An FIR is based on prima facie evidence. Then there are searches, seizures and recording of statements, etc. Then only you come to a solid conclusion," association`s Secretary Pankaj Kumar Singh said.
There may be genuine cases and there may be a wild goose chase, but an honest officer must not be harassed, said Singh, who is working as Inspector General in Central Reserve Police Force (CRPF).
The Indian Forest Service (IFoS) Officers` Association said it stands by honest bureaucrats.
"We stand by honest bureaucrats in service or those who have retired. This is something ridiculous (CBI`s action)," IFoS association President A R Chadha said.
"I have worked with him (Parakh). He is a man of high integrity," Chadha said.
There are about 11,00 members of the three services -- around 4,737 IAS, 3,637 IPS and about 2,700 IFoS officers -- working across the country.
CBI has registered a case against Parakh and industrialist Kumar Mangalam Birla on charges of criminal conspiracy and corruption in connection with alleged irregularities in the allocation of two coal blocks in Odisha in 2005.
Parakh has dubbed as "baseless" the allegations levelled against him by CBI.
Former top bureaucrats have also come out in support of Parakh and criticised CBI`s action.