ONGOLE: The alleged misuse of recommendation letters issued by Energy Minister Balineni Srinivasa Reddy to some government employees to help them get transferred to places of their choice became a hot topic in the district administration and police are reportedly on the job of finding out how the letters came into the possession of the employees and their authenticity.
The alleged misuse of recommendation letters signed by the minister came to light after a large number of them landed on the tables of the district officials, who were handling the counselling process for transfer of employees.
According to highly-placed sources, a discreet inquiry by the police revealed that staffers of the minister’s office were behind handing over the recommendation letters to the employees without his knowledge. “We suspect money too changed hands in the process,’’ the source said. Acting on the preliminary findings, two constables were reportedly sent to the vacancy reserve (VR).
With the new government taking up the transfer of employees in almost all the departments, some reportedly approached the minister with a request to recommend their transfer to their favourite posting. As a routine practice, the minister reportedly obliged and gave some letters of recommendation.
Sources in the minister’s office said with requests for recommendation letters growing, Balineni later decided not to entertain anyone and gave instructions to his staff accordingly. However, without his knowledge, several recommendation letters were given to employees.
“Such letters landed in the hands of employees working in Prohibition and Excise, Rural Development, Panchayat Raj, Revenue, Education and R&B departments and the same was produced in the counselling sessions of the respective departments,’’ the source said.
In some cases, there were multiple letters for the same posting/transfer, raising suspicion of officials. Ironically, neither did the district officials nor the staff at the minister’s office lodged a complaint. Police on their own initiated an inquiry after receiving intelligence inputs about suspicious activity in the counselling process.
Nothing appears to be amiss: SP
SP Siddharth Koushal, who ordered the I Town CI to take up a discreet inquiry, sent two constables to VR after they were found to have a role in the scam. However, police are reportedly trying to hush up the issue. When contacted, he said there seemed to be no misuse of letters. “As per the available information, the situation arose due to issuance of more number of letters without verifying the eligibility of the person,’’ he said.