Agency moves to turn preliminary enquiries on irregularities into regular cases.
New Delhi: The war of words between the AAP-led Delhi government and the Centre is set to intensify further with the CBI preparing to convert its four “preliminary enquiries” (PE) pertaining to the alleged irregularities in several Delhi government’s contracts into regular cases.
“The agency has completed its investigation into the preliminary enquiry registered against deputy chief minister Manish Sisodia to probe the alleged irregularities committed in awarding a social media campaign, ‘Talk to AK’, contract of the Delhi government to a private firm. It will soon be converted into a regular case. Besides, the agency may also convert its PE registered to probe irregularities in appointing ‘feedback unit’ of the city government into a regular case,” sources said.
Investigations into two others PEs have also been completed, they added. A close aide of Delhi chief minister Arvind Kejriwal and former health secretary Tarun Seem is already under the CBI scanner for alleged irregularities in hiring three private security firms for seven government hospitals in the city.
The social media campaign “Talk to AK” was an initiative of chief minister Arvind Kejriwal. “The PE was registered based on a complaint filed by the vigilance department of the Delhi government. Preliminary investigation by the CBI has revealed that a consultant of a well-known public relations company was hired by the Delhi government to promote ‘Talk to AK’ (Talk to Delhi chief minister Arvind Kejriwal) campaign and a proposal of `1.5 crore was prepared for this purpose despite objection by the principal secretary,” sources added.
The city government went ahead with the proposal and the consultant spent the money thereby creating a liability for the government, they added. The BJP and the Congress had called the campaign a marketing gimmick at the cost of the exchequer.
As far the CBI probe into the Delhi government-appointed “feedback unit” is concerned, sources said, “Investigation has revealed that the unit was allegedly created to gather relevant information and actionable feedback about officials and departments under the Delhi government.
The unit was formed under directorate of vigilance by the Delhi government without necessary approvals from the lieutenant-governor”. The CBI will soon convert this PE into a regular case, they added.