A secret "spy unit" allegedly formed and being run by the Delhi government has come under the Central Bureau of Investigation's (CBI) scanner.
According to a report in DNA, a secret group called the Feedback Unit is running directly on the orders of the Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal, where some dubious financial transactions have come to the fore. The newspaper reported that unaccounted money and some vehicles were allegedly allotted to retired intelligence officials to carry out espionage work, which is now under the CBI scanner to analyse its legality and any cases of corruption.
"The remuneration of the Feedback Unit was paid on the basis of attendance. The staff have recorded 100 per cent attendance and Rs 40,82,982 has been released since February 2016 by way of secret service expenditure, remuneration, telephone and other miscellaneous expenses. But the Vigilance Department, under which the spy unit was formed, is clueless as to where the staff sat and what work they did since inception," the DNA report claims.
The CBI, according to a report in The Times of India, had lodged an FIR in connection with the case in December last year after the then lieutenant governor of Delhi Najeeb Jung had found irregularities in the issue.
It was Jung who first talked about the existence of such a spy unit and expressed his doubts. In an interview given after he resigned as Delhi L-G, Jung had accused Kejriwal of practising "nepotism and gross favouritism" in certain appointments, while adding that the Delhi chief minister had set up a “secret unit” like a “counter IB” with suspicious motives, according to Hindustan Times.
However, the Aam Aadmi Party had then scoffed off the allegations stating that Jung was apparently reading a lot of "spy-thrillers" since "he had a lot of time on his hands, to suggest such a thing", as reported in The Indian Express.
The Delhi BJP, on the other hand, did not miss a chance to play up the allegations and accused the AAP-led Delhi government of using the state machinery to keep a tab on the party's political opponents.
"Delhi already has an efficient police force and other intelligence agencies and therefore it appears that Kejriwal wanted this new agency for keeping a tab on political opponents," a report in DNA from the time quoted Delhi BJP's Satish Upadhyay as saying.
However, the Delhi government officials had denied the presence of such a unit, claiming that although a decision to form such a unit was taken, it never materialised.
Now, the re-appearance of the Feedback Unit in the DNA report has brought the issue back in the fore. It will be interesting to see how Arvind Kejriwal and his government in Delhi will respond to the allegations.
Updated Date: Mar 30, 2017 21:00 PM