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Saradha scam: Home Secretary Anil Goswami sacked for alleged bid to stall Matang Sinh’s arrest

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New Delhi (Feb. 04, 2015): Home Secretary Anil Goswami was tonight removed from the post in the wake of controversy over his alleged attempt to stall the arrest of Saradha scam accused Matang Sinh, a former Congress minister at the centre.

“Home Secretary has been removed,” official sources said on a day of hectic activities following media reports that Goswami, a UPA goverment appointee, had tried to prevent CBI officers from carrying out Sinh’s arrest on Saturday.

The Indian Express first reported that Home Minister Rajnath Singh had briefed Prime Minister Narendra Modi regarding allegations against Goswami.

Sources said Goswami, who was summoned by Home Minister Rajnath Singh on Wednesday for an explanation, “confirmed making a call to the CBI”. Goswami was also called by the Prime Minister’s Office (PMO) later in the day.

Singh is reported to have briefed Prime Minister Narendra Modi on the issue.

This is the second instance of the removal of a top bureaucrat in a week after Foreign Secretary Sujatha Singh’s services were curtailed last Wednesday after she refused to resign from the post.

The continuance of Goswami, who turned 60 last month and had his tenure till June 30, became untenable after he had admitted to Home Minister Rajnath Singh that he had spoken to CBI officials before they arrested Sinh in Kolkata on Saturday.

CBI was miffed with the interference by Goswami in the arrest of Sinh. The agency had submitted a report to the PMO on the issue about Goswami and a Joint Director level officer of CBI.
Rajnath Singh who had returned to the capital yesterday talked to Goswami who admitted to have called up CBI officials probing the Saradha scam in connection with Sinh’s arrest.

The Minister immediately briefed the Prime Minister on the issue last night. Today he called Goswami for a discussion followed by a meeting with CBI Director Anil Sinha.

Both the officials maintained silence on their separate meetings with the Home Minister.

Goswami, a 1978-batch IAS officer of Jammu and Kashmir cadre, was appointed as Home Secretary in 2013 during the tenure of UPA Government. He was said to have been close to Matang Sinh, a controversial politician from Assam who was a Minister of State for Home in PV Narasimha Rao’s government.