Barely a week before Anti-Corruption Bureau of Delhi government registered an FIR against union petroleum minister Veerappa Moily along with others in gas price scam following directions from former Delhi chief minister Arvind Kejriwal, the same bureau had turned down a request for probe against union home minister Sushil Kumar Shinde in an alleged case of graft calling it beyond its 'jurisdiction'.
ACB's double standards on the issue have raised questions on AAP government's move which is being viewed as 'politically motivated '.
In its reply to an RTI application filed by Vivek Garg, advocate and RTI activist, the ACB in an order dated February 04, 2014, stated that it has no jurisdiction to register FIR against Shinde on the complaint alleging his involvement in corruption in transferring / postings of SHOs of Delhi Police. The investigating agency instead asked the director of vigilance, its parent body, to transfer the complaint to some other investigative agency.
"If ACB can register case against Moily, if it can probe the cash for vote scam why cant it investigate the FIR aginats Home minister?," said Garg.
Defending it, AAP senior leaders maintained that anything that happens in Delhi is under the jurisdiction of Delhi government's ACB. "ACB has the concurrent powers with the CBI and it was well within the jurisdiction of the ACB to register against the ministers. The matter was not in our knowledge," said Deepak Bajpayee, AAP spokesperson.
Another senior AAP person said that the ACB's decision to subside the issue is understandable as despite being under Delhi government the bureau is actually being run by officials of Delhi police and Shinde being the home minister is their "boss."
On February 11, ACB had registered an FIR against Reliance Industries Ltd (RIL) chairman Mukesh Ambani, petroleum minister Veerappa Moily, former petroleum minister Murli Deora and former director general of hydrocarbons VK Sibal for increasing the price of natural gas produced in India.