Ahluwalia booked, but the greater question remains



The Himachal Pradesh Vigilance Bureau on Thursday finally registered an FIR against Subhash Ahluwalia, former Principal Secretary of former Chief Minister Virbhadra Singh for having assets disproportionate to his known source of income. Ahluwalia appears to be in deep trouble now as the VB claims to be having strong evidence to prove their case. After the FIR was lodged, Ahluwalia’s houses in Shimla and Dharamsala were also raided.

Amidst all this drama, the initial allegations of political witch-hunting have suddenly gone silent. So while former minister Sanghi Ram and former chairman of Himachal School Education Board BR Rahi are these days fighting their battles against the VB alone after being booked for preparing a fake mark sheet, Ahluwalia may find himself even more isolated being a serving bureaucrat and not a politician.

His case, in fact, has been a very rare and recent development in the state with the Bharatiya Janata Party aiming for his jugular even before the elections. Never in the history of the state had allegations of corruption against serving government officials been made an election issue.

After preliminary complaints, Vigilance Bureau had conducted a through probe into assets and wealth of Ahluwalia at various places within and outside the state. The probe revealed that in 15 bank accounts belonging to Subhash and other family members deposits of nearly Rs. 1.34 crore were received during the past five years, which was higher than their known income amount of nearly Rs. 70 lakhs. Besides this, properties enlisted by Ahluwalia in his submission to the Vigilance were also found undervalued, raising enough suspicion for further investigation.

Unlike the neighboring state of Punjab where political backlashing is taken more or less a norm with each party in power rooting for the previous government’s favourite and favoured officers, but in Himachal the polarity of bureaucracy has never been visible too starkly. The Congressmen in the state have so far not made any statement regarding VB’s action, which may also be because it being a simple corruption case, but if that is the case than why should have the Congress government remained silent when BJP initially tried to make it an election issue?

Politics apart, corruption within the government machinery is fast emerging as a serious issue within the state and should be dealt with sternly lest those who still have faith in the just way of living too join in to share the loot.

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  1. Sadly corruption is a readymade election issue, be it Party A or Party B.

    Ahluwalia is not the first government official to figure in an election campaign, a senior police official, a vice-chancellor, a chairman of a service selection board and several others have found their names echoed in election campaigns.

    What is new is that for a change a serving senior bureaucrat has been raided upon.

    Setting this cat among the pigeons is bound to have a rippling effect elsewhere.

  2. All this drama is for the gallery. Nothing ever happens to a IAS officer. Even the people who are incharge of the probe are of the IAS/IPS lobby and they have a strong brotherhood among themselves. See the case of Thind who is still serving though he has been probed by the CBI.

    Ahluwalia's name will figure in the newspaper for a few weeks but he has nothing to worry. The system takes care of the high and mighty!

  3. Vikram: 1. Too adverse to Media. If you dont read papers, how o you know news? just close ur eyes and imagine?

    2. reading your cooments seems ur name is Subhah not vikarm :-)…:-) dont take this also to heart…just kiddin'

    3.Its the people like you who make the people their idols, beleive them blindely and even have courage to challange system/media/politics/democracy for your faithfullness to your idols…

  4. Ahluwalia reinstated and given key position….

    Congratulations to all Himachalies & demoncrazy, on bjp congress merger! Chor-chor mausere bhahi…..

  5. This is just the beginningg……….. another person to be reinstated will be Sher Singh… the suspended drug inspector who was caught red handed with a big amount of money from a Baddi plant by the Vigilance department….. "supected to be bribery"- is police language….

  6. Wait till there is a whiff of election next and Mr. Dhumal will suddenly start harping about Ahluwalia at full pitch.

    मदारी का खेल देखो

    पैसा फेंको तमाशा देखो

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