This Article is From Dec 06, 2013

IAS officer Ashok Khemka defamed Robert Vadra, says Haryana government

File photo: IAS officer Ashok Khemka

Chandigarh: Ashok Kemka, a senior bureaucrat in Haryana, damaged the reputation of real estate major DLF and Robert Vadra, the son-in-law of Congress president Sonia Gandhi, says the state government in a chargesheet.

Mr Khemka, 48, has 15 days to rebut those charges. The chargesheet against him has been filed with rules that allow his dismissal from service, if he is found guilty. He has been accused of "exceeding his jurisdiction" by cancelling a 57-crore deal between Mr Vadra and DLF.

Mr Khemka has long alleged that he is being persecuted by the Haryana government, headed by Chief Minister Bhupinder Singh Hooda, for daring to question land deals involving Mr Vadra.

The Congress is in power in Haryana. Mr Khemka has alleged that as Sonia Gandhi's son-in-law, Mr Vadra got sweetheart deals from the state government that bent the rules for him.

"What was expected of me? Should I have just left Mr Vadra's land deal and is it only that poor people will be probed? I was only doing my public duty," Mr Khemka told NDTV. 

In October 2012, while Mr Khemka was the top man in the department that handles land registration, he cancelled the deal between Mr Vadra and DLF. The government says he is guilty of administrative misconduct and that he violated the roles by discussing the controversy in the media and criticising government policy.

A committee set up by the state government to investigate the controversial deal declared that it was transparent and valid.

Mr Khemka has said the committee did not meet with Mr Khemka even once to seek his explanation.

Mr Khemka is currently the Director General of Archives in Chandigarh. The government is planning to serve a second chargesheet to him that relates to his tenure as the Managing Director of a state-run agricultural firm. The government says Mr Khema under-performed and the firm did not sell enough seeds. He counters that he is being punished for reporting an alleged corruption swindle in the firm to the CBI without seeking the state government's permission.