New Delhi: The Prime Minister's Office (PMO) has refused to accept $30,000 donated by Magsaysay Award winner and bureaucrat Sanjiv Chaturvedi, saying conditional donations are not accepted.
Chaturvedi, an Indian Forest Service (IFS) officer, said he never put any conditions in making his donation to the Prime Minister's National Relief Fund (PMNRF) and threatened to take the matter to court.
"Donations can be made towards PMNRF through cheque/demand draft. It is apprised that PMNRF does not accept conditional donations," says a letter that the PMO sent to Chaturvedi, neither referring specifically to his donation nor stating plainly whether or not the donation was actually received and accepted.
Chaturvedi -- who won Magsaysay Award 2015 for his "exemplary courage" in exposing corruption -- decided to donate his award money to PMNRF after AIIMS-New Delhi, under the union health ministry, stonewalled his donation which he had meant to be used for the treatment of cancer patients.
He is currently the deputy secretary at AIIMS, having been removed from the post of Chief Vigilance Officer (CVO) of the institute in August 2014, much before the completion of his tenure which was to end in 2016.
In his letter to the PMO making the donation, Chaturvedi said he decided to donate the Magsaysay Award money to the PMNRF after he failed to get the health ministry to accept it.
The bureaucrat's request to donate the money to AIIMS for the treatment of the cancer patients was initially kept on hold and later refused to be accepted.
Replying to the latest letter from the PMO, Chaturvedi said that there were never any conditions from his side in making the donation and urged the officials to go through his letter once again.
"I reiterate that the said donation is absolutely without any conditions. In spite of my freedom fighter-family background and my service career being the biggest testimony, the hypothetical inferences that have been drawn disregarding the material facts are very unfortunate," wrote Chaturvedi.
He questioned the intention of the PMO officials in examining his documents and the cheque that he said he had sent to the PMO on December 5.
"It appears that either the concerned authorities of the PMO have not bothered to go through my letter and documents or the said cheque has been misplaced," he wrote.
"In either case, you (PMO) are requested to timely confirm the non-receipt of cheque No.343000 dated 5th December 2015 to the PMNRF, so that I may cancel the same and issue a fresh cheque of the said amount in favour of the PMNRF."
The bureaucrat has been widely perceived to have a tough stand on corruption and has as a result incurred the displeasure of the political bosses and suffered frequent transfers.