K V Chowdary, who is set to take over as the new Chief Vigilance Commissioner on Tuesday said he has full respect for both Prashant Bhushan and Ram Jethmalani, who have opposed his appointment to the top post in the country's apex anti-corruption watchdog.
He said his top priorities at the helm of the Central Vigilance Commission will be to strengthen preventive vigilance and a dogged focus on investigations.
"I respect them (Bhushan and Jethmalani). I am clear in my mind and heart about what I do. They are my elderly figures and I believe that they will themselves realise that I am not the kind of man that they have alleged. My work will speak for me.”
“One of them (Jethmalani) is like a father figure to me and hence I reiterate that I respect them both and would not like to join issues with them," Chowdary said on the eve of his swearing-in by President Pranab Mukherjee.
Both Bushan and Jethmalani have objected to Chowdary's appointment, alleging there were questions about his professional credentials.
Chowdary, also former chairman of Central Board of Direct Taxes, said he has some priorities to work on.
"My priorities will be to strengthen the overall work of the CVC and focus on preventive vigilance. It would be important for me to see that disciplinary proceedings are completed in a time-bound manner so that no one is harassed.
"The CVC's focus will also be on good investigations so that probes are undertaken in the right earnest and they reach their logical conclusion," he said.
The 1978-batch Indian Revenue Service (Income-Tax cadre) officer said it will be his aim to see that "whistleblowers are well protected and there is no personal vendetta in play when it comes to vigilance-related works."
"The Central Vigilance Commission will aim to strengthen the overall work of the government and promote transparency in decision-making," Chowdary said.
He retired as the Chairman of the CBDT in October last year and was immediately appointed as an Advisor to the Special Investigation Team on black money headed by retired Supreme Court judge Justice M B Shah.
Hailing from Andhra Pradesh, he has earlier served as the Director General of Income Tax (Investigations) in Delhi and has been credited with dealing with some of the high-profile cases related to the 2G spectrum allocation scam, the HSBC black money list and a number of other tax evasion cases.
He has also been credited with initiating a host of new steps to enhance and fine tune snooping capabilities and investigations of the Income-Tax department.
Chowdary was also part of the three-member high-level finance ministry team which visited Switzerland last year and deliberated on some successful breakthroughs vis-a-vis India's combat against illegal funds stashed in the alpine nation.