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regular-article-logo Thursday, 29 February 2024

Assam government suspends 15 ACS, APS officers in Assam Public Service Commission 'cash for job' scam

The evidence-based on which the now-suspended officers are facing investigation was reported in the one-man Justice (Retd) BK Sarma commission

PTI Guwahati Published 01.12.23, 03:11 PM
Representational Picture

Representational Picture File picture

The Assam government has suspended 15 state civil service and police service officers for their alleged involvement in the Assam Public Service Commission (APSC) 'cash for job' scam, official sources said on Friday.

Out of the 15 officers placed under suspension through orders issued on Thursday, 11 are from the Assam Police Service (APS) and the rest from the Assam Civil Service (ASC).

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Of these, two APS officers had been arrested in the case last week, while summons to appear before a Special Investigation Team (SIT) of the state police which is probing the case have been issued to several others, the sources said.

The suspension notifications issued by the Personnel department said these officers were beneficiaries of the "anomalies and malpractices carried out by the APSC" and they got appointment by "enhancement" of their originally scored marks in the final tabulation sheet based on which the final results were declared.

It said the recommendation of the APSC for recruitment of these officers was "illegal" and the process through which they obtained their jobs "amount to gross misconduct, corruption and moral turpitude".

As they are under investigation for criminal offence, allowing them to continue in their present post "may not be in the interest of public service and may cause embarrassment to the government", it said.

In view of it, the officers have been placed under suspension with immediate effect, the notification said.

The evidence-based on which the now-suspended officers are facing investigation was reported in the one-man Justice (Retd) BK Sarma commission.

It had unearthed "anomalies and malpractices resorted to for the selection of candidates in exchange of money and other extraneous consideration by the APSC headed by the then chairman Shri Rakesh Kumar Paul while conducting the Combined Competitive Examination, 2013/ 2014", the notification added.

The APSC was embroiled in the 'cash for job' scam, which came to light in 2016, and nearly 70 persons, including Paul and over 50 civil and police services officials, have been arrested so far.

Paul was arrested by Dibrugarh police in November 2016 and released on bail in March this year.

The chief minister had directed the director general of police (DGP) to constitute a SIT in September this year to further investigate the scam.

The SIT, headed by additional DGP (CID) Munna Prasad Gupta, is conducting the probe now and has been directed to submit its report within six months to the Gauhati High Court in a sealed envelope.

The Chief Minister's Office (CMO) had said last month that the state government has already initiated departmental proceedings against 34 tainted officials of the 2013 batch whose names were mentioned in the Justice (Retd) B K Sarma Committee report.

Similarly, action has been initiated against those candidates of the 2014 batch who were allegedly selected by unfair means with their marks changed during the tabulation process.

Except for the headline, this story has not been edited by The Telegraph Online staff and has been published from a syndicated feed.

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