Other States

Chouhan ‘hounding me, says Dalit IAS officer

A Dalit IAS officer, Ramesh Thete, on Thursday alleged that Madhya Pradesh Chief Minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan and his top officers were “hounding” him and trying to create a situation akin to that which forced Rohith Vemula to end his life, and claimed he was declared ‘untouchable’ and not given work.

“Chouhan and his top officers are creating a situation akin to what prompted (Hyderabad Central University research scholar) Rohith Vemula to commit suicide. I appeal to Prime Minister Narendra Modi to order a CBI probe into what Chouhan, along with top bureaucrats, has done (in MP),” he told reporters.

“I wrote a letter to the CM complaining that Additional Chief Secretary (of Water Resources Department) R. S. Julania, who has been given additional charge of Panchayat and Rural Development, has divested me of power and declared me ‘untouchable’,” said Mr. Thete, who is the department secretary.

“Instead of taking note of my complaint, the Chief Minister issued a show-cause notice to me,” he said.

“If an independent agency like CBI carries out an inquiry into the works done by Mr. Julania, he will be behind the bars...

Two dams built in Panna district with an investment of Rs 70 crore have collapsed recently and couldn’t even withstand the first rainfall,” he alleged.

Mr. Thete alleged the Chief Minister was “shielding” the top bureaucrat and he (Chouhan) might be involved in it. “Public money is being looted and the Chief Minister is protecting officers like Mr. Julania and indulging in it,” he alleged.

He also alleged WRD engineer-in-chief M. G. Choubey has been given post-retirement extension for a fifth time to carry out construction of the dams in Panna.

“The work was given to Mr. Choubey after sidelining the officers of Dalit and tribal communities,” he added.

“Dalit officer like me, who is an Ambedkarwadi and talks about equality, justice and brotherhood, is being hounded, served showcause notice... By creating such a situation, they want me to commit suicide like Rohith Vermula as I am challenging them,” he claimed.

Attempts to contact Mr. Julania failed. His office said that he was in Canada right now.



Show-cause notice

Mr. Thete demanded that the show-cause notice served on him be withdrawn immediately, Mr. Julania be removed from his current post and booked under the SC & ST (Prevention of Atrocities) Act.

Chief Secretary Antony De’Sa will meet Mr. Chouhan later in the day on the issue involving the Dalit officer, the Chief Minister’s Principal Secretary S. K. Mishra said. -

PTI





‘Public money is being looted

and the Chief Minister is

protecting officers’




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Printable version | Sep 24, 2021 1:41:42 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/other-states/Chouhan-%E2%80%98hounding-me-says-Dalit-IAS-officer/article14489982.ece

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