What happens when a serving officer is trapped in intra-department rivalries? This scenario befell a senior officer, Anup Kumar Srivastava, of Customs and Central Excise at Delhi.
The mafia of some powerful but corrupt superintendents and inspectors of the department in Delhi, in a nexus with some tax-evaders, could not tolerate his initiatives. When Srivastava initiated a vigilance inquiry against them and transferred them from the Commissioner ate on complaints of extortion received from the trade, a vengeful conspiracy was hatched to falsely implicate him with the intention of removing him from the post of Commissioner, C. Excise, Delhi-1. Thus, a CBI case was made. However, he has been vindicated, as the High Court of Delhi has quashed all the charges against him. On November 21 last year, the court held that, viewed from any angle, even a prima-facie case could not be made out. A pre-liminary inquiry to investigate his assets initiated by the CBI was found to be based on false premises. The said case has also been closed. His integrity and honesty of 30 years of dedicated service has thus been upheld. Instead of posting him back as Commissioner, C. Excise,Delhi-1 and upholding his dignity as well as restoring the morale of honest officers, the department preferred to post him as Commissioner (Appeals), Customs & C. Excise, North Eastern Region, Guwahati. It is to be seen who will restore his dignity and honour.