Well ! You may have read many interesting stories, inspiring stories, stories and movies about ghosts that run a chill through your spine when those ghosts come in your dreams just to say Hello ! But this man has been, and is, in reality a ghost for the corrupt, the notorious and for those so called owners of the society, who think that they can buy anything with money and do anything they want.
Going by the number of years in his bureaucratic career in the service of the nation, this most honest IAS officer has been transferred 54 times in his 29 years of service to the nation. In another words, he has been transferred every 8 months on an average in his entire career.
In March 2019, Ashok Khemka was posted as DG, Archives & Archaeology, Haryana. The Haryana Govt. further issued orders of his transfer in Oct. 2021 to the post of the Principal Secretary, Science & Technology Department. It is alleged that he had exposed the corruption again in the department he was working in as per the Wikipedia based information. From being an IAS to serving in almost all departments including fisheries department is what Ashok Khemka has served as. It is a usual tactic to throw honest officers into departments or positions like Traffic Control, Archives & Archaeology, Revenue, etc. where they do not have the authority to become a troublemaker to the corrupt or organized criminal organizations. What powers would a Science & Technology Principal Secretary have in dealing with land grabbers or sand mafias ? Absolutely nothing !
Early Life, Education & Career
Ashok Khemka was born in Kolkata to a lower middle class family. He was bright in academics, later did Bachelor of Technology in Computer Science from IIT, Kharagpur in the year 1988. He further pursued Ph.D in Computer Science from Tata Institute of Fundamental Research and then did MBA in Business Administration & Finance and also holds a degree in Economics from IGNOU University.
After getting selected in UPSC exams, he became an IAS officer in the Haryana Cadre. He is an IAS Officer of 1991 batch.
In 2013, he had exposed a deal that he thought to be untoward and had requested an inquiry by the Central Bureau of Investigation. The government of Haryana allegedly refused this and Bhiwani-based NGO filed PIL on the same scam. On 18 October 2013, CBI had registered a preliminary enquiry into the alleged irregularities in the purchase of wheat seeds in HSDC seeking registration of a case against officials of National Cooperative Consumers Federation and National Agriculture Cooperative Marketing Federation for selling seeds at inflated prices to HSDC.
“And the transfer this time was quite humiliating. At 15:30, an officer of the rank of Under Secretary of the government, at least five levels below me, appeared with an order of the Principal Secretary of the Agriculture, appointing him as the MD of the Corporation and asked me to step down,” Khemka told news channels.
Previously Ashok Khemka was Managing Director in Haryana Seeds Development Corporation.
Ashok Khemka has been a whistleblower in many scams and corruptions during his service. However, he came to the limelight after he played a major role in exposing the land scam by Indian National Congress, National President Sonia Gandhi’s Son-in-Law Robert Vadra. Robert Vadra’s firm Skylight Hospitality was illegally licensed to develop a land in Haryana, which was later sold to DLF for Rs.58 crore. Khemka had later stated that his life was being threatened for exposing the scam and he had received many threats as reported by The Indian Express. The Haryana Govt. in 2019 cancelled the land rights given to Robert Vadra, husband of Priyanka Vadra as reported by The Economic Times in Sept., 2019 in its online publication.
The 3.5 acre land was alleged to have been bought for Rs 7.5 crore by Vadra’s company and later sold to DLF for Rs 58 crore after getting a licence to develop a colony.
The BJP has alleged there were irregularities in the land deal involving Vadra, the son-in-law of Congress chief Sonia Gandhi, during the term of the Bhupinder Singh Hooda government in the state.
Chargesheets filed against Ashok Khemka
Two chargesheets for Khemka have been filed, one of which accuses of failing his responsibilities at the Haryana Seed Development Corporation, where Khemka had found corruption and requested for CBI inquiry. Further Khemka quoted that “I have reliably heard that 10 chargesheets will be filed against me on frivolous grounds along with 10 private complaints,”. The Haryana government was accused of misusing its authority to penalize Ashok Khemka.
Khemka also exposed massive land deal corruption in and around Gurgaon, which as per reports are said to be worth USD 3 billion to USD 44 billion.
Ashok Khemka is Haryana’s second-most transferred bureaucrat after another retired IAS officer, Pradeep Kasni, who was transferred 71 times in 35 years of his service.
Featured image credit: Livemint
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