The Congress Party and Shri Vir Bhadra Singh have decided to brazen out the allegations of corruption. Mrs. Sonia Gandhi and Shri Rahul Gandhi will hide behind silence. Shri VB Singh has dared anyone to either lodge an FIR against him or to prove the allegations of corruption.
The initial allegation against him is already being investigated by the CBI. The allegation relates to the initials ‘VBS’ which were found in the diary of a steel manufacturing company. The second allegation relates to the deposit of Rs 5.5 crores in a Shimla Bank account and the transfer of that money by one Shri Anand Chauhan for the benefit of Shri VB Singh and his family members’ LIC policies. This allegation I understand is also being investigated by the CBI.
The third allegation relating to his dealings with a power company is the one which now requires to be investigated and proved. Shri VB Singh, his family members and their company have received interest free loan from the promoter of a power company. That power company had transactions with Government of Himachal Pradesh which at a given point of time had passed orders favouring the company. The facts prima facie establish that the loaned monies are used for buying shareholding in other group companies of the lender. Certain facts showing round tripping of money have also surfaced.
Section 11 of the Prevention of Corruption Act punishes a public servant who accepts and obtains for himself or any other person any valuable thing from a party which is likely to be concerned in any proceeding or business transaction with which he is connected in his official capacity. This offence is punishable upto 5 years. Knowing fully well that the power company is doing business with the State of Himachal Pradesh, the Chief Minister and his wife accept interest free loan. This transaction also violates the provisions of section 13(1)(b) of the Prevention of Corruption Act. The offence under this section is punishable for obtaining a valuable thing by a public servant for himself or for any other person without a consideration. Admittedly, an interest free loan is a valuable thing received without a consideration.
Section 20 of the Prevention of Corruption Act is the most effective provision of the Act. If an acceptance of a valuable thing other than a legal remuneration takes place by a public servant it is presumed to be for the purposes of bribery. The onus then shifts on the public servant to establish why this is still not a bribery. It is for this reason that I have called it an open and shut case. This case obviously cannot be investigated by the Himachal Pradesh police against its’ own Chief Minister. My letter to the CBI Director on 29th December,2013 constitutes an FIR. In order to investigate the same, the consent of the State Government under section 6 of the Delhi Special Police (Establishment) Act is required. I dare the State Government of Himachal Pradesh to give it’s consent so that an investigation into these allegations can also take place.