20191003

Income Tax mid-level officers in informal group lobbying against top officials

NH Political Bureau

NH Political Bureau


Published: 2 Oct 2019, 6:32 PM
Headed by Nirmala Sitharaman, the Finance Ministry, which is considered the second most important department in the Government of India after the PMO, is grappling with the infighting of babus, NH has learnt.
As per sources, mid-level officers of the ministry, especially from the Income Tax department, have formed an informal group against top officials and have been lobbying against them.
Their main resentment, as per sources, is that while they are being punished on graft charges/ professional misconduct, top officials remain untouched.
According to the sources, some high-level officials who were involved in corruption cases have been given promotion in the past, despite evidence against them.
“They should have been interrogated, had the government worked in a transparent manner,” asserted the source.
According to sources, the government has also prepared a list of over 30
officials, mainly comprising mid-level officials, who face punitive action
on graft charges or for professional misconduct. 

“While mid-level officers are being punished, culprits at the top are enjoying patronage,” contended the source.

Referring to the dismissal or compulsorily retirement of tax officers in September, the source expressed anguish “over the targeted action” of the government against the “corrupt officials”.
It is worth mentioning that the government has dismissed some senior income tax officers, including one of the ranks of the joint commissioner, on charges of corruption and professional misconduct immediate after assuming power.
The government compulsorily retired 15 commissioner-level officials of the Central Board of Indirect Taxes and Customs (CBIC) -- the agency that oversees GST and import tax collections -- on charges of corruption, smuggling and even criminal conspiracy in June this year.
Similarly, the government has compulsorily retired 15 IT officers who were accused of corruption and other malpractices.
So far, according to sources, in the crackdown against “corrupt officials,” over 50 high ranking tax officers, including 12 under the CBDT, were compulsorily retired.
However, there are others who believe that the crackdown is aimed at uprooting corruption, not officials. Not only mid-level officials but the commissioner level officials were given compulsory retirement by the government, said a source who is in the know of the development

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