Wednesday, December 16, 2015

Ashish Joshi: The cigar-smoking bureaucrat on whose complaint CBI raided Delhi secretariat

Ashish Joshi, an Indian Post and Telecommunication Accounts and Finance Service officer, concedes he smokes cigars, but not in the office premises as alleged by an Aam Aadmi Party leader when Joshi was forced to relinquish the post of Member Secretary, Delhi Dialogue Commission (DDC). Joshi, believed to be close to AAP’s ideology then, was let down, and he in turn complained against Delhi chief minister Arvind Kejriwal’s key bureaucrat Rajendra Kumar, a 1989 batch IAS. Know more about Ashish Joshi:
An alumnus of St. Stephen’s college, Delhi and National Institute of Financial Management, Faridabad, Joshi is currently located in Uttarakhand, serving as Controller of Communications Accounts in that hill state. He is 1992 batch Indian Post and Telecommunication Accounts and Finance Service officer. Earlier, during the UPA government’s time, Joshi was the nodal officer for implementation of ‘Prime Minister’s New Fifteen Point Programme for the Welfare of Minorities’ (2006 -2011) and for the examination and implementation of Sachar Committee recommendations (2006-2011). He was also the principal director in Government Accounting Standards Advisory Board (GASAB) when played an important role in formulation of accounting standards for Union and state governments (2012-2013). Joshi also served as Controller of Communication of Accounts (CCA) in Haryana and Jammu and Kashmir, and also deputy General Manager (DGM) (Planned Policy Finance, (Budget) in Mahanagar Telephone Nigam Limited (MTNL), a government-run telecom company.
Joshi was closely associated with NGO movement in India and in “Prayas”, a child-focused development organization in particular, something that probably dragged him close to the Anna movement and the current AAP leadership.
When the AAP formed government earlier this year, Joshi was on a deputation to Delhi government. He was posted as member (finance) of Delhi Urban Shelter Improvement Board (DUSIB), an agency that can notify certain areas as slums where with the passage of time the buildings have become dilapidated and the basic civic services are missing. But Joshi got another role—additional charge as member secretary in Delhi Dialogue Commission in which chief minister Kejriwal is the chairman and another senior AAP leader Ashish Khetan is the vice-chairman. But that’s where the problem began. Within a month, he had to relinquish the charge as he developed differences with Khetan on various issues.
It was Rajendra Kumar who called up Joshi to relinquish his position at Delhi Dialogue Commission (DDC). All those incidents took place in the month of March this year. And on April 18, he was repatriated to his parent cadre, i.e. the ministry of communication and IT.
But Joshi, unlike many other bureaucrats, did not let it pass as a non-issue. He wrote to LG-appointed ACB head MK Meena to probe Kumar giving details of Kumar’s role in alleged wrongdoing in his earlier postings during Sheila Dikshit government.
As this article is being written, the CBI is questioning Kumar on the second day in a row. Already, a case is registered against Kumar, and others such as MD of Intelligent Communication System India Limited (a public sector undertaking), New Delhi, two then MDs of ICSIL; two then directors of a private firm of Delhi and the said Delhi based private firm and other unknown persons on the “allegations of criminal conspiracy and criminal misconduct”.
According to CBI, Kumar allegedly facilitated award of contracts worth Rs 9.50 crore (approx) to the said company through ICSIL. The investigation is currently on.

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