Chief ministers of Congress ruled states Ashok Gehlot and Bhupesh Bhagel are not the only ones who complain that the Directorate of Enforcement (ED) acts on political motive. ED's action in Telangana, Jharkhand, West Bengal, Delhi and Bihar has taken its toll not only on political dispensation of these states but also on bureaucracy that executes schemes of the government.
At least half a dozen IAS officers and a couple of ministers are behind bars over alleged scams in schemes run by these governments.
The alleged political indifference and vendetta then is engulfing the efficiency of bureaucrats, who became ‘extra cautious' in implementing any scheme.
“Bureaucrats are perplexed in these states. Those who are handling important big budgeted portfolios are living in fear of central agencies. Frequent ED's intervention is playing big on their minds. This will affect the economic and social development of these states,” said a senior bureaucrat in Rajasthan, which is witnessing ED's action at least in three cases simultaneously.
He said that bureaucrats are paying cost for executing ambitious programmes and schemes of governments. Recent raids in Rajasthan have disturbed bureaucrats involved in execution irrespective of their involvement. These actions bring disrepute to bureaucrats who follow the government's diktat without any motive and agenda.
“Bureaucrats are apolitical entities. They are trained to carry out ideas and programmes of chief minister and political dispensation which is ruling the states. But of late they are getting trapped in these alleged scams, which central government believes but state governments keep on denying,” he said.
Fear of unwarranted incessant intervention of central agencies has led ten non BJP ruled states to withdraw general consent to investigation by CBI, which restrains CBI from taking up cases on its own without consent of the state government.
These states are Chhattisgarh, Jharkhand, Kerala, Meghalaya, Mizoram, Punjab, Rajasthan, Telangana, Tamilnadu and West Bengal. Of these states only Meghalaya has BJP as coalition partner.
“Since entry of CBI has been restricted, ED and Income Tax, having jurisdiction across the country, are suddenly into action. They are investigating one or the other case in these states,” said another bureaucrat.