The Special Judge, CBI Cases, Patiala (Punjab), has convicted RL Channalia, former Joint Commissioner, Income Tax, Amritsar (Punjab), and sentenced him to undergo three years rigorous imprisonment with fine of Rs 20,000 in a case involving corruption.
The CBI had registered the case on 28 June 2010 under Sections 420, 467, 468, 471 IPC and 13(1) (d) read with 13(2) of the PC Act, 1988, against Channalia, the then Joint Commissioner Income Tax (ITAT), Amritsar, on a complaint from the Central Board of Direct Taxes (CBDT). It was alleged that the convict promoted himself as additional commissioner of income tax by tampering with the CBDT’s Notification No. 7 dated 20 March 2007 and putting his name in place of another person at the first serial number of the said notification. A notification from the CBDT’s website contained the name of another person at that position and the other notification from the service book of Channalia contained his name in that place!
Investigation revealed that Channalia had joined the Indian Revenue Service on 20 August 1990 as assistant commissioner of income tax and further promoted as deputy commissioner in 1998 and joint commissioner of income tax (JCIT) in 2001. In July-August 2007, Channalia claimed in his office that he had been promoted as additional commissioner of income tax with effect from 1 January 2003 as per a copy of the CBDT notification obtained by him from his own sources. He started using the new designation in his official communication and directed the then office superintendent to get prepared 4 rubber stamps in English in the name of “RL Channalia, IRS, Addl. Commissioner of Income Tax, Range-6, Pathankot” and 2 rubber stamps in Hindi, in the same designation.
Subsequently, the fraudulent officer directed the establishment section of his office to calculate the arrears of his pay with effect from 1 January 2003 by giving the said copy of CBDT Notification No. 7 dated 20 March 2007. Investigation further revealed that a 3-member committee meeting was held on 17 January 2007 to consider officers in the grades of JCIT for their placement in the non-functional selection grade. In view of pending disciplinary proceedings against Channalia, his case along with 5 other officers’ was kept in sealed covers and was excluded from the approved list. The original notification dated 20 March 2007 issued under the signature of the then under secretary contained the name of another person at Sl No 1 and not of Channalia.
The trial court has found the accused guilty and convicted him.