Monday, November 14, 2011

SM Krishna warns Indian envoys of action against financial wrong-doing

Foreign Minister Krishna
FOR the first time, Indian diplomats are warned by their boss, external affairs minister SM Krishna, to ensure transparency in all financial dealings how small the amount could be, a report in a national newspaper quoting an unnamed foreign ministry source said. They were even warned that the ministry would initiate disciplinary action against the errant officers. Importantly, the warning was formal as minister Krishna preferred to issue an official letter dated October 20, 2011 to all its ambassadors and high commissioners.
Unlike their domestic counterparts like the IAS officers, the Indian Foreign Service officers usually get away with less or no punishments after indulging in financial irregularities because of geographical and diplomatic reasons. But the recent instances of irregularities in outsourcing visa and passport processing work have forced the Indian government to take stringent actions against diplomats too. The number of complaints from non-resident Indians and others has piled up during the last few months.
The MEA has also issued a detailed guideline on procurement by Indian missions abroad. One of the senor diplomats based in The Hague is now reportedly facing a CBI investigation on a visa outsourcing procurement case.

Diplomat’s credit card misused
Indian Ambassador to Sudan AK Pandey has recently found that his credit card was fraudulently used by someone in purchasing goods worth Rs 2 lakh. It was later discovered that a man from Amritsar misused the diplomat’s credit card. The police has arrested the man.

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