Babus turned a blind eye to JBT recruitment scam

The CBI chargesheet into the JBT recruitment scam clearly mentions that the Chautalas, from the very first day of taking over the reins of Haryana in February 2000, intended to manipulate the results.

Before Sanjiv Kumar, director for primary education in the then Om Prakash Chautala's government, who was also arrested on Wednesday for allegedly conniving with Chautala in changing the interview scores to favour certain candidates, the father-son duo and their two confidants — Chautala's political adviser Sher Singh Badshami and his OSD Vidya Dhar — had also tried to pressurise Kumar's predecessor, 1986-batch IAS officer Rajni Sekhri Sibal.

And this happened before the very eyes of senior officers. Chautala and his son had held two meetings with Sekhri in the presence of other officers. When she refused to play ball, these babus, other than supporting her, preferred to keep quiet.

According to the CBI chargesheet, Sibal — the then director (Primary Education) — was pressurised to change the interview score list of JBT teachers at the behest of Chautala and his son. Sibal was called for two meetings alongwith then Financial Commissioner (Education) Prem Prashant and then Director (Secondary Education) P K Mahapatra. One such meeting was held at Haryana Niwas in Chandigarh where Ajay and Badshami were also present.

Another meeting was held at Sector 7 in Chandigarh, Dhar's official residence. This meeting was attended by Prashant, Mahapatra, Sibal, Ajay Chautala, Badshami and Dhar. This time as well, Sibal refused to change the list.

Sibal, through an anonymous call, was also offered five per cent share of the money collected to manipulate the list. However, she refused. Subsequently, her house was burgled for which an FIR was registered at Sector 19 police station in Chandigarh.

Irked, Sibal sealed the lists and proposed to set up a committee comprising education department officers to look into the matter. The committee so formed would be empowered to break open the seal of the list, check the papers, get data fed into computer and compile the final merit list for declaration of result through HARTRON. Her decision was approved by Prashant and education minister Bahadur Singh on June 20, 2000. Chautala too approved the note, given to him by Vishnu Bhagwan — then principal secretary to the CM — on June 22.

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