Panaji, Jun 13: Congress and Goa Forward have slammed the Goa government for "going back" on its pre-poll promise of adopting zero tolerance for corruption, in the wake of reinstating Chief Minister Laxmikant Parsekar's brother-in-law Dilip Malvankar despite graft charges.
Malvankar, a senior officer at state-run Goa Industrial Development Corporation (GIDC), was suspended in August 2015, after the Anti-Corruption Bureau (ACB) caught him red-handed while accepting bribe. He was reinstated in service by GIDC last week, triggering criticism from the Opposition.
"Reinstatement of Dilip Malvankar is a prime example of complete failure of BJP's pre-2012 (Goa Legislative Assembly polls) slogan of zero tolerance for corruption," Goa Congress spokesman Sunil Kawathankar said in a statement.
Stating that Superintendent of Police (SP) Bosco George and Police Inspector Nolasco Raposo were shunted out of ACB after a case was registered against Malvankar, Kawathankar said that it was just a "preparatory procedure" for his reinstatement.
"It is shocking and very unfortunate that a person caught red-handed while accepting bribe gets reinstated in service. This will only embolden other corrupt officials who by now must be feeling comfortable and safe doing corrupt acts under the BJP-led government," he said.
Goa Forward, the youngest party in the state, said it was unfortunate that the officer who was caught accepting bribe has been reinstated. "BJP had given pre-poll slogan in 2012 of zero tolerance for corruption.
The party has completely backtracked on its promise," Goa Forward president Prabhakar Timble said. "It is quite visible now that BJP has failed to act on corruption-related matters, except doing witch-hunting of rival politicians," he said.
Parsekar could not be contacted for a reaction. A senior officer attached to the Chief Minister's Office (CMO) said that Parsekar had no role in the reinstatement.
"The Chief Minister has already clarified in the past that he was not interfering in the investigation of the case. He was not involved in the reinstatement," he said.