Home secretary Anil Goswami, who was sacked yesterday after it was revealed that he may have intervened in the CBI probe against former union minister Matang Sinh, may have been shown the door after a recorded conversation with the former minister was revealed to the Home Minister and officials of the Prime Minister's Office.
The Indian Express reports that when the CBI went to arrest Sinh, he was allowed to use the investigating agency's phone, after he claimed he had high-level contacts. Sinh reportedly called Goswami and the conversation was recorded by the CBI. This was revealed to Home Minister Rajnath Singh and PMO officials by CBI director Anik Sinha, effectively sealing Goswami's fate.
Goswami was accused of calling CBI officials to intervene in the arrest of Sinh in the Saradha chit fund case that the investigating agency is probing. Sinh was arrested on 31 January. PTI had reported on Sunday that the CBI was miffed with the interference by Goswami in the arrest of Sinh. The agency had submitted a report to the PMO on the issue about Goswami and a Joint Director level officer of CBI.
The bureaucrat on Wednesday met with Rajnath Singh and spoke with officials of the PMO regarding the issue. In his meeting with the Home Minister, Goswami is said to have admitted that he had spoken to CBI officials before they arrested Sinh in Kolkata on Saturday.
The Home Minister then met with CBI chief Anil Sinha and also briefed the Prime Minister about the issue. Both the officials maintained silence on their separate meetings with the Home Minister.
The final decision on his resignation was reportedly taken by the Prime Minister's Office after the Home Minister forwarded the statements made by Goswami and the CBI director, reports the Times of India.
Goswami's proximity to Sinh, was reportedly well known, and the former minister of state for home affairs reportedly had regular visits from home ministry officials in Delhi due to his perceived closeness to the bureaucrat. Sinh had also attended the wedding of Goswami's son some months ago.
After he was asked to resign, Goswami, a 1978-batch IAS officer of Jammu and Kashmri cadre, made a request for voluntary retirement with immediate effect by waiving the notice period, which was accepted by the Government.
"Consequent upon approval of the request, the term of Goswami as Home Secretary will stand curtailed with immediate effect," the announcement by the government said.
Goswami was appointed as Home Secretary in 2013 during the tenure of UPA government. He turned 60 last month and would have continued till 30 June.
The new Home Secretary will be Rural Development Secretary L C Goyal, a 1979-batch IAS officer of Kerala cadre, and will occupy the post for a period of two years.
Goyal has had experience in the home ministry from 2002 to 2007 as joint secretary (Internal Security) a few years ago.
This is the second instance of the removal of a top bureaucrat in a week after Foreign Secretary Sujatha Singh's services were curtailed last Wednesday after she refused to resign from the post. While there were no allegations of impropriety against her, the Government is said to have been unhappy with her leadership of the Ministry.
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Updated Date: Feb 05, 2015 14:04:55 IST