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Rs 500- Rs 700 Cr Ayushman Bharat Jan Arogya Scam in J&K: Court directs ACB to file Status Report

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STATE TIMES NEWS

JAMMU: In a significant order, the Court of Additional Sessions Judge (Anti-Corruption), Jammu O.P. Bhagat today directed the Anti-Corruption Bureau (ACB), Jammu to submit the latest status of the complaint dated October 10, 2022 lodged by Advocate Sheikh Shakeel Ahmed originally to Director, CBI seeking registration of FIR into Rs 500-700 crores scam in the implementation of Ayushman Bharat Jan Arogya Scheme in the Union Territory of J&K which later came to be transferred by CBI on April 19, 2023 to the Director, Anti-Corruption Bureau, J&K. The Additional Sessions Judge (Anti-Corruption) Jammu has directed the ACB to submit the status report by or before September 26, 2023.
After hearing Advocate S.S. Ahmed in-person the Additional Sessions Judge (Anti-Corruption), Jammu O.P. Bhagat observed that this application has been received in this Court having been transferred by Special Judge Anti-Corruption, Jammu and perused the application as well as the Annexures annexed with the file and keeping in view the contents of the application as well as Annexures annexed with the same, the application is allowed and ACB Jammu is directed to file the status report by or before the next date of hearing i.e. September 26, 2023.
In the application filed by Advocate S.S. Ahmed, it has been submitted that after getting RTI information from the State Health Agency (SHA) and Health and Medical Education Department of the Government of J&K, it has been prima facie established that a scam of Rs.500-700 crore in the implementation of Ayushman Bharat Jan Arogya Scheme in J&K has been committed, as such, the complainant lodged a comprehensive complaint dated October 10, 2022 to the Director, CBI seeking registration of FIR in the multi-crore scam. However, CBI did nothing in the matter and kept quite and did not convey the outcome of the complaint to the whistleblower and it was on February 7, 2023 the complainant S.S. Ahmed filed an application before Special Judge, Anti-Corruption (CBI Cases), Jammu wherein the complainant sought directions to the CBI to submit the status of the complaint dated October 10, 2022.
In the application filed today, it is further submitted by Advocate S.S. Ahmed that pursuant to the directions passed by the Special Judge Anti-Corruption (CBI Cases), Jammu, the CBI filed a status report wherein it was divulged that the complaint dated October 10, 2022 has been forwarded by the CBI to the Director, Anti-Corruption Bureau (ACB), J&K vide its letter dated April 19, 2023.
Advocate S.S. Ahmed during the course of arguments submitted that almost five months have elapsed since the entrustment of the scam to the ACB by CBI Headquarters and the ACB is sitting over the matter and the ACB has not disclosed the final outcome of the matter till date.
Advocate S.S. Ahmed further submitted that the ACB, J&K is under a legal obligation to share the outcome of the Inquiry with the complainant within seven days as mandated by the Hon’ble Supreme Court of India in case titled Lalita Kumari V/s Government of U.P & Ors wherein the Supreme Court has directed that the applicant/complainant must be informed about the outcome of the preliminary inquiry within seven days.
After considering the submissions of Advocate S.S. Ahmed who appeared in person, the Court of Additional Sessions Judge (Anti-Corruption), Jammu O.P. Bhagat directed Anti-Corruption Bureau (ACB), Jammu to submit the latest status of the complaint dated October 10, 2022 lodged by Advocate Sheikh Shakeel Ahmed originally to Director, CBI seeking registration of FIR into Rs.500-700 crores scam in the implementation of Ayushman Bharat Jan Arogya Scheme in the Union Territory of J&K which later came to be transferred by CBI on April 19, 2023 to the Director, Anti-Corruption Bureau, J&K. The Additional Sessions Judge (Anti-Corruption) Jammu has directed the ACB to submit the status report by or before September 26, 2023.

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