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Kargil scam: SC pulls up Centre for inaction

November 21, 2011 17:08 IST

"It cannot go on like this," the Supreme Court tersely told the Centre on Monday while rapping it for not taking action against officials allegedly involved in the multi-crore scam in the purchase of defence equipments in 1999 Kargil operations.

"We do not want to be harsh with you in the case. We have been accommodating but it cannot go like this," the bench headed by Justice Aftab Alam told the government.

The court's remarks came when senior advocate Rakesh Dwivedi, assisting the court as amicus curiae, pointed out that the government has failed to take action against anyone during the last 12 years after the scam was unearthed.

"We are not happy at all (with Centre's action)," the court observed.

Dwivedi submitted that there is lack of political will to take action on the part of the government.

The Comptroller and Auditor General (CAG) in its report has noted that there were many lapses in the purchase of defence equipments to the tune of over Rs 2,000 crore.

The court, after holding a brief hearing in the case, adjourned the matter for November 28.

The court was hearing a PIL on the alleged scam relating to defence purchases for 'Operation Vijay' in Kargil.

Earlier, Dwivedi had referred to the CAG report saying that nearly 75 per cent of the Rs 2,163 crore worth of supplies were received well after the cessation of hostilities and therefore no way supported the operations.

The court had earlier voiced concern that a "chaotic situation" would arise in the country if the government departments sit over the CAG reports and refuse to accord sanction for prosecution.

CAG had found lapses in 35 cases. However, the defence department had refused to accord sanction for prosecution of the officials claiming there was no substance in 28 cases.

"Most of the time, CAG reports are not given their due. The department attaches no value to the institution but the Constitution gives the CAG a position of primacy," the apex court had observed.
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