Irked over delay by the chief vigilance officers (CVOs) of central government departments in dealing with corruption complaints, the Central Vigilance Commission has decided to bring in systemic changes by setting in time limit for disposal of such plaints among others, according to an official order issued on Thursday. The probity watchdog would now refrain from sending repeated reminders to these CVOs, who act as distant arm of the Commission to check corruption, for seeking clarifications on incomplete references involving allegedly corrupt officers sent by them.
During the course of examination and disposal of cases in the Commission, it has been observed that several reminders are sent to CVOs of concerned departments/ organisations seeking further information/clarifications on reports received in complaints referred by the Commission for investigation as well as in vigilance cases referred for first/second stage advice of the Commission, said the order issued by the CVC. Such further information are sought by the Commission, since the references made by CVOs are either incomplete or matters have not been considered/analysed in a proper perspective, due to which the Commission is unable to tender its advice on references received from the departments/organisations, it said.
The reply/further information from the CVOs are many a time, delayed and takes several months/years and leads to wastage of precious time and reduction in impact of punitive action on suspect/charged officers and to the public at large, the anti-corruption watchdog said. The Commission on consideration of the processing/examination of the cases, therefore, has observed that system of examination needs systemic change and has decided a course of action that would be adhered to finalise and tender advice in such long pending references, it said. All such cases/pending complaint cases or ones pending for long periods for further information/clarifications etc., would be reviewed internally in the Commission by 30th September, 2020 under the supervision of the concerned Additional Secretary, the CVC said. For any information/clarification, only one reminder would be sent by branch officer concerned to CVO of the department/organisation to reply/report back by a particular date (maximum of 15 days), it said.
If no reply is received, the concerned Additional Secretary, CVC would speak to the CVO of the department/organisation and ask to send the reply within seven days (indicating a particular date), the order said. If no reply comes, a date would be fixed for video conference with CVO in a week’s time, and the Secretary/Additional Secretary/branch officer would take the reply and if it is not received, the file would be submitted to the Commission for “appropriate action", it said in the directive issued to the CVOs and administrative authorities concerned seeking strict compliance.