Uttarakhand Speaker Revokes 228 Ad Hoc Appointments In Assembly Secretariat Over Violation Of Norms

Uttarakhand Speaker Revokes 228 Ad Hoc Appointments In Assembly Secretariat Over Violation Of Norms

Dehradun: Uttarakhand Speaker Ritu Khanduri on Friday revoked 228 ad hoc appointments made in the Assembly secretariat in violation of norms.

Of the revoked ad hoc appointments, 150 were made till 2016, six made in 2020 and 72 in 2021, Khanduri said at a press conference here.

The period of appointments covers the tenures of both Congress and BJP Speakers.

Former Congress MLA Govind Singh Kunjwal was the speaker of the state assembly in 2016 while cabinet minister Premchand Aggarwal was the speaker in 2020 and 2021.

He is at present the Urban Development Minister in the Pushkar Singh Dhami government.

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The decision to revoke the appointments were taken following recommendations made by a three-member expert committee which detected violation of norms in these appointments, Khanduri said.

The expert committee submitted its report to the Speaker late on Thursday night, she said.

“I am immediately sending my decision to revoke the appointments to the state government for approval as these appointments had the government’s approval,” she said.

Chief Minister Pushkar Singh Dhami had requested the Speaker for a probe into the appointments and their revocation if irregularities were found.

Irregularities were detected in the appointments on several counts. For instance, they were not made through a selection committee, the posts were not advertised, the list of names were not sought from an employment office, the Speaker said.

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The committee headed by DK Kotia had been constituted on September 3 following allegations that relatives, friends and acquaintances of politically influential people were given ad hoc appointments in the Assembly secretariat through the “backdoor”.

The panel which consists of experienced bureaucrats submitted its 2,014-page final inquiry report to the Speaker within 20 days, 10 days ahead of its one-month deadline.

She also cancelled a competitive examination held for 32 posts in the secretariat in March this year due to the involvement of a Lucknow-based firm, RMS TechnoSolutions PVT Ltd, which has been indicted for its role in the paper leak of examinations conducted by the Uttarakhand Subordinate Service Selection Commission.

The Speaker also placed Assembly Secretary Mukesh Singhal under immediate suspension in connection with the cancelled test for his alleged involvement in the irregularities.

The results of the test were still awaited, she said.