Notice Issued to Association President As Per Rules, Says KSEB Management | Kerala News
Thiruvananthapuram: Kerala State Electricity Board (KSEB) Board has clarified that a notice to Chairman and Executive Engineer of KSEB Officers’ Association MG Suresh Kumar has been issued as per the standards.
Alleging that Kumar misused Council vehicles while he was the additional private secretary to former Energy Minister M. M. Mani, the notice ordered him to hand over Rs 6,72,560 for the unauthorized use of the vehicles.
Elaborating, KSEB management said the Vigilance Wing has reviewed every personal journey Kumar has taken and spoken to those affected. Instead of responding to the over 100-page show cause notice, Kumar made baseless justifications through the media. The board also said it had taken action against Kumar after reviewing two records detailing his travels since 2019. Investigations by the chief vigilance officer and chief financial officer revealed that Kumar had used the vehicles for purposes unofficial.
The order, allocating a vehicle to Kumar, could not be found in the offices of the council, and this was informed to the investigator by the secretaries of the company and the administrative wing. There was no government order awarding the vehicle to Kumar, the council said.
It was also pointed out that only government secretaries, department heads, private secretaries to ministers, district collectors and senior police officers were allowed to drive official vehicles to their residences.
Kumar would have to produce relevant documents if special sanction had been given to extra and extra private secretaries to use the vehicle, commute to and from their residences.
The board refuted the argument that it had no power to initiate disciplinary action against Kumar when he was in deputy. Citing Section 20 of the Kerala Civil Service (Classification, Control and Appeals) Rules 1960, the council said the substitute civil servant had the same power as the appointing civil servant to take action against an employee for indiscipline. The official also has the power to review the actions of the employee after the deputation period.
The Deputy Officer’s approval is required to terminate any punitive action against any act committed during the deputation period. Such approval is not required after completion of the deputation.
The official concerned could inform the company, with supporting documents, if he had been authorized to use the vehicle for personal purposes without paying. Although he had been authorized to use the vehicle for personal purposes, he could not use other vehicles, including that assigned to the chief mechanic (distribution plant), to travel to his district of residence. Vehicles allocated to others could not even be provided for official purposes, the council said.
Directors, Secretary, Chief Engineer, Financial Adviser, Accounts Manager, Legal Adviser, Judicial and Disciplinary Investigations Officer, Vigilance Officer and Public Relations Officer may use the vehicles of the Régie, after payment of the rent, for personal purposes.
The council clarified that Kumar, an assistant executive engineer, was prohibited from using official vehicles for personal use.