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Das panel report on APSC illegal: RTI activist

By Correspondent
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JORABAT, Sept 5 - Well-known RTI and social activist Okram Prasanta Singha has alleged that the report of the Subhas Das Committee that was formed to look into the anomalies in the Assam Public Service Commission (APSC), is illegal.

Addressing a press conference at the Guwahati Press Club here on Friday, Singha pointed to several anomalies and irregularities in the report of the committee, including to the fact that it violated principles of natural justice as it had prepared the report after suggestions from the APSC itself, which was illegal.

He said an institution or a person against whom there was an allegation, could not be the judge of its/his own case. He added that the report in this case was prepared on the APSC�s own suggestion and investigation, and was not done independently as was supposed to be done by an investigating body.

Singha said that according to an RTI report (34PSC/POS-3/2015-2016/20 dated 30/06/2015) given to him by the APSC, Subhas Das didn�t physically visit and collect answerscripts, false/forged documents as evidences from the APSC, but only collected their (APSC�s) views. He said the committee should have approached the authorities concerned to verify the certificates of Backward Castes and SC, ST etc. But that was not done. Instead, only the suggestions and views of the State Chief Minister and the APSC were taken.

The RTI activist said that in his report Subhas Das had wondered how a constitutional body could be investigated, and that it was really doubtful that an administrative body could question a constitutional body. But Singha pointed out that according to Section 2 of the Prevention of Corruption Act 1988, even a public service commission could come under investigation and it could be investigated and charged for corruption.

In this context he referred to a judgement of the Supreme Court (Maneka Gandhi v/s The Union of India 1978), and said administrative inquiry and quasi judicial inquiry must be more stringent and must follow principles of natural justice, but the Subhas Das panel did not do so.

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Das panel report on APSC illegal: RTI activist

JORABAT, Sept 5 - Well-known RTI and social activist Okram Prasanta Singha has alleged that the report of the Subhas Das Committee that was formed to look into the anomalies in the Assam Public Service Commission (APSC), is illegal.

Addressing a press conference at the Guwahati Press Club here on Friday, Singha pointed to several anomalies and irregularities in the report of the committee, including to the fact that it violated principles of natural justice as it had prepared the report after suggestions from the APSC itself, which was illegal.

He said an institution or a person against whom there was an allegation, could not be the judge of its/his own case. He added that the report in this case was prepared on the APSC�s own suggestion and investigation, and was not done independently as was supposed to be done by an investigating body.

Singha said that according to an RTI report (34PSC/POS-3/2015-2016/20 dated 30/06/2015) given to him by the APSC, Subhas Das didn�t physically visit and collect answerscripts, false/forged documents as evidences from the APSC, but only collected their (APSC�s) views. He said the committee should have approached the authorities concerned to verify the certificates of Backward Castes and SC, ST etc. But that was not done. Instead, only the suggestions and views of the State Chief Minister and the APSC were taken.

The RTI activist said that in his report Subhas Das had wondered how a constitutional body could be investigated, and that it was really doubtful that an administrative body could question a constitutional body. But Singha pointed out that according to Section 2 of the Prevention of Corruption Act 1988, even a public service commission could come under investigation and it could be investigated and charged for corruption.

In this context he referred to a judgement of the Supreme Court (Maneka Gandhi v/s The Union of India 1978), and said administrative inquiry and quasi judicial inquiry must be more stringent and must follow principles of natural justice, but the Subhas Das panel did not do so.

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