The CBI on Monday arrested Rajendra Kumar, Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal's principal secretary, on corruption charges.
Mr. Kumar, an Indian Administrative Service (IAS) officer belonging to the 1989 batch of the Arunachal Pradesh, Goa, Mizoram and Union Territories (AGMUT) cadre, was handpicked by Mr. Kejriwal.
The arrest follows a >case registered by the CBI on December 16, 2015 pertaining to allegations that Mr. Kumar abused his official position by favouring a particular firm in getting tenders from the Delhi government.
The FIR registered by the CBI said that Mr. Kumar favoured Endeavours Systems Private Limited in 2006 for a total sum of Rs. 9.5 crore when he was in charge of the education department in Delhi.
On Monday, a CBI official said Mr. Kumar has emerged as the kingpin of the scam and the scope of the corruption case had increased to Rs. 50 crore.
Endeavours Systems Private Limited was a front company of Mr. Kumar, opened in partnership with his schoolfriend Ashok Kumar, he said.
“This front company was to provide Information Technology solutions and software to Delhi government schools,” he added.
Three other private persons were also called for questioning to the CBI headquarters.
After being questioned for half a day, the CBI decided to place the two officers under arrest, along with Ashok Kumar, a close aide and school friend of Mr. Kumar, and the owners of a private firm Sandeep Kumar and Dinesh Gupta.
The CBI had registered a case against Mr. Kumar and others in December last year, alleging that the officer had abused his official position by “favouring a particular firm in the last few years in getting tenders of Delhi government departments”.
The charges pressed by the CBI are under Sections 120-B of IPC (criminal conspiracy), and 13(2), 13(1)(d) of the Prevention of Corruption Act (criminal conspiracy, criminal misconduct etc.) for allegedly favouring a private company — Endeavour Systems Pvt. Ltd. — in five contracts.
The CBI alleged that the accused had entered into a criminal conspiracy and caused a loss of Rs. 12 crore to the Delhi government in the award of contracts between 2007 and 2015. It claimed they had taken ‘undue benefit’ of over Rs. 3 crore.