The Anti-Corruption Bureau (ACB) has asked the former chief minister and People’s Democratic Party (PDP) president Mehbooba Mufti to explain her role before the anti-graft body about the illegal appointments in Jammu and Kashmir Bank.
The ACB said that some appointments made in the bank were made on the recommendation of few ministers of the previous government led by her.
“During the course of investigation of case FIR No 10/2019, police station ACB dated 8 June 2019, it has surfaced that some appointments were made by chairman J&K Bank on references and recommendations of few ministers,” reads an ACB letter sent by Superintendent of Police ACB, Srinagar to Mehbooba.
The anti-graft body has sought clarification from the PDP chief whether such references had her “endorsement, verbal or otherwise for appointments in the J&K bank.”
The state government earlier removed J&K Bank Chairman Parvez Ahmad and R K Chibber was appointed as interim chairman of the financial institution. After Ahmad’s ousting, the ACB sleuths had conducted raids at the Bank’s Corporate headquarters in Srinagar and later at his residence.
The PDP president, however, said she was not surprised over the ACB letter.
“Concerted efforts are being made to browbeat mainstream leaders and thwart potential efforts for a collective response. I am too small an entity vis-a-vis the cause that unites us today. Such tactics won’t work,” Mehbooba wrote on Twitter.
On 8 June ACB had registered a case under Prevention of Corruption Act following a written complaint that sought to probe into the allegations related to illegal and fraudulent appointments made in J&K Bank.
The ACB spokesman had said that since the allegations reflected commission of criminal misconduct by officers and officials of J&K Bank, they “constitute offence under section 5(1)(d) of Prevention of Corruption Act Samvat-2006 and punishable under section 5(2) of the Act.”
Earlier, documents and discriminatory material pertaining to the appointments were seized by ACB officials during searches at the premises of Corporate Office J&K Bank.
“The investigation is going on into the case,” an official said.