Delhi court junks complaint alleging Congress leader Kamal Nath’s hand in railway board chairman’s appointment


A Delhi court has dismissed a complaint filed by a whistleblower who alleged that senior Congress leader Kamal Nath had interfered with the appointment of the railway board chairman which influenced the decisions of former Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and several senior officials of the Central Vigilance Commission (CVC).

The court complaint was filed by S K Nagarwal against six members of the Central Vigilance Commission (CVC), including former commissioners J M Garg and Pradeep Kumar. Nagarwal had alleged that the alleged accused persons hatched a criminal conspiracy to ensure the appointment of one Arunendra Kumar to the post of chairman, Railway Board (CRB) through illegal means.

Nagarwal had alleged that “Kumar hatched a criminal conspiracy with Kamal Nath, an influential leader of the ruling party Indian National Congress and Cabinet minister at that time and other persons.”

“Thus, in his illegal designs, he used the clout of Kamal Nath to influence the accused officials in the CVC and also the then Prime Minister to overrule the recommendation of the minister of railway,” the complainant alleged.

Special judge Geetanjli Goel said there is “nothing to show any misuse of office in respect of looking after arrangements of the post of CRB having been given to him.”

The judge said there is “even nothing to show that Kumar had misused his office” and on Kamal Nath’s alleged role in the appointment, “only bald allegations have been made in that regard and there is nothing on record to substantiate the same”.

“There is nothing to show that under the clout of Kamal Nath, recommendation of Minister of Railway was not agreed to by the then Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and the name of Arunendra Kumar was approved by him for appointment to the post of CRB,” the court said.

The court also mentioned that “every act cannot be dissected minutely and seen in isolation and a holistic view has to be taken to arrive at a finding whether any offence is indeed made out.”

The complainant had produced a list of works that Kumar had sanctioned for the development of Chhindwara railway station to appease Kamal Nath, since that particular station fell under the Congress leader’s constituency in Madhya Pradesh. However, the court said that “merely on the basis of the said list of works, it cannot be said that Arunendra Kumar, by abusing his powers and misusing the Railways’ money had done several works for advertisement and appeasement of Kamal Nath in Chhindwara constituency.”

“Once there is nothing to show that the said works were sanctioned out of turn or against the norms, in the absence of any specific averments or evidence in that regard and there is nothing to show any misuse of Railways’ money or to show that any inquiry was conducted into the sanctioning of the said works and it could even be that the works were sanctioned in routine or due to requirements of the area,” the court said.

The court held that “only bare allegations are there and there is nothing specific on record to show that Kamal Nath had exercised any influence over the accused officials of CVC or even to lead to such an inference prima facie or to show that Kamal Nath was a part of any conspiracy to ensure the appointment of Kumar to the post of CRB.”





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