BeyondHeadlines Special Correspondent
The commissioner is facing allegations of corruption and is the boss of Pune collector who is the returning officer for Pune Lok Sabha Constituency, says Bhatia who is contesting as People’s Guardian Party candidate for Pune Lok Sabha seat.
Well known anti corruption crusader and former IAS officer Arun Bhati has written to the election commission demanding immediate transfer of Pune Divisional Commissioner Prabhakar Deshmukh. The controversial IAS officer is facing serious allegations of corruption and currently officiating as the Pune Divisional Commissioner. Bhatia in his letter stated that the allegations of corruption against Prabhakar Deshmukh have appeared extensively in print and electronic media. Journalists have the documentary evidence against the commissioner in their possession.
He is alleged to have acquired government land illegally, including land reserved for rehabilitation of project affected families. No enquiry has been held by the government even though the evidence is documentary and very easily verifiable, he said.
In the interest of free and fair elections this commissioner must immediately be removed because the collector Pune who plays a key role in registration of voters and conduct of elections reports to this commissioner in the administrative hierarchy and will therefore be susceptible to pressure from the commissioner, Bhatia added.
In case the government claims that an inquiry has been held the report should be placed in public domain and election commissioner of India must scrutinize it. The evidence in the possession of the media is very clear and compelling.
“How such officers remain uninvestigated in India is another story. But I am sure you will agree we cannot have these officers associated with the election process which the election commission is mandated to safeguard. It therefore request the election commissioner to order the state government to immediately transfer the commissioner,” he stated.