Govt Dismisses Two Forest Officers For “Involvement” In CET 2012 Scam

SRINAGAR: The Jammu and Kashmir Forest, Ecology and Environment Department Thursday dismissed services of a Range Officer and a Forester for their involvement in the Common Entrance Test, 2012 scam.

As per the order of dismissal issued in this regard by Commissioner Secretary, Forest, Ecology and Environment Department, Sanjeev Verma, Range Officer-II, the then WildLife Warden, Kishtwar, Altaf Hussain Shah, and DDR Forester, the then In-charge DFO Social Forestry, Kupwara, Mohammed Amin Mir had been found involved in the common Entrance Test, 2012 scam following which a case FIR Number 24 of 2013 was lodged against the officers by the Crime Branch, Kashmir.

The order quoted Crime Branch, Kashmir’s communication of May 12, 2014, asserting that the then, Joint Director, Forest Protection Force (FPF) Kashmir IFS Javed Ahmed Andrabi was appointed as inquiry officer to enquire into the charges levelled against these two officers.

“The inquiry officers have provisionally concluded the penalty of ‘censure’ be imposed on the accused officers regarding their unauthorized absence from the duties pending the outcome of criminal proceedings before the Anti Corruption Court in Srinagar,” Verma’s order quoted the CBK communication as saying.

Both the officers also remained under judicial custody from May 3, 2018, to May 17, 2018, of Crime Branch, Kashmir in the case Crime Branch, Kashmir V/s Mushtaq Ahmed Peer and others.

On the basis of a report from the Crime Branch and Principal Chief Conservator of Forests, J&K, then Incharge DFO Marwah, Altaf Hussain Shah and then Incharge Project Officer LAWDA Mohammed Amin were also placed under suspension.

Thursday’s order said the law is “clear that the convicted persons, even if the sentence (conviction) has been suspended by the appellate court, can be terminated from the service on criminal charges”.

Pertinently, Shah has retired from the active service on October 31, 2019, while Mir is retiring on July 3, 2024.

“The Court of Special Judge Anti Corruption Srinagar on April 25, 2014, has convicted them among others with rigorous imprisonment. Therefore the services of the employees are to be dismissed from the date of conviction (April 25, 2018) in terms of provisions laid down in Article 311 of the Constitution of India,” reads the dismissal order. (KNS)

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