Amaravati: The Andhra Pradesh Anti Corruption Bureau Saturday hit back at the CBI over its charge that the state government had leaked secret information to trap some corrupt officials, saying it had gone by the rules in nabbing a Central Excise Department superintendent in a bribery case.
The ACB also said it was well within its jurisdiction in dealing with the case, while the CBI ceased to enjoy that authority since the state government last month withdrew the general consent (under the Delhi Special Police Establishment Act)
The Director General of Police Ram Prawesh Thakur, who is also the acting chief of ACB, maintained that they had all material evidence to prove they had acted as per the rules.
“We have the call data, voice-recording and other material in the case. The complainant had approached the ACB on November 22, much before he went to the CBI.
According to the procedure, we first established the veracity of the complaint and then proceeded accordingly to trap the accused official,” he told a press conference here.
The CBIs request for consent was made on November 28, he said.
In its first strike on a Central government official after the Chandrababu Naidu government barred entry of the CBI into the state, Central Tax and Central Excise Superintendent M K Ramaneswar was caught red-handed Friday while accepting a bribe of Rs 30,000 for doing an official favour to a businessman in a GST (Goods and Services Tax) matter.
The CBI had accused the Andhra Pradesh government of leaking secret information to trap some corrupt officials, saying this resulted in nabbing of just one person, while the others escaped.
Asked about this, Thakur said “its your imagination. The CBI never said that.”
He, however, praised the CBI for its efforts to root out corruption and said the ACB works in tandem with the central agency.
“The ACB is serious about eliminating corruption. We are dedicated and determined to end corruption among all officials, be they from the state or the Centre,” he said.
“There is, and will be full cooperation to any agency, including the CBI, in curbing corruption. The ACB has faith and trust in CBI and appreciates its sincerity,” he said.
At the same time, the effort and sincerity of ACB is praiseworthy, he added.
Earlier, the state Principal Secretary (Home) A R Anuradha had said in a statement that the CBI Superintendent of Police from Visakhapatnam did not agree to a joint operation by the two anti-corruption agencies to nab the culprits in the case.
“But in the interest of swift action against the accused, the SP shared the information about the complainant, including the mobile number and sought immediate action by the ACB so that the opportunity for action against a corrupt official was not lost.
Accordingly, the information was shared with the ACB and swift action was taken against the corrupt official,” she added.