Firebrand Panchayatiraj minister Rajendra Rathore is once again on fire. And this time on the firing line is Additional Chief Secretary of his department Sudarshan Sethi. Rathore has alleged Sethi of patronising corruption and bypassing minister on important files. He has written a complaint letter to chief secretary N C Goel alleging that Sethi is not only protecting corrupt officials but also promoting them to key positions.He said that those found guilty would not be spared. If no action is taken then he will write to the chief minister for her intervention.”Guilty will be punished,” he said.This is not the first time Rathore had a tiff with top official of his department. He has had uneasy equations with Rajeev Thakur also, who was principal secretary of panchayatiraj last year. However it was related to Thakur’s workingstyle. But this time Rathore’s allegations are serious. He is levelling allegations of corruption on officer, who has served more than 32 years in All India Service.The incident is an eerie testimony to the fact that crack is gradually widening between ministers and top babus in Rajasthan which is ultimately breaking the speed of development in the state.In his letter to chief secretary, Rathore has written that there have been a large number of cases of financial discrepancies in Rajasthan Rural Livelihood Development Council. But neither Sethi is launching any probe into it nor apprising the minister about it. The minister wrote that despite specific instructions, Sethi is not sending ‘corruption’ related files to him.Rathore has also alleged that one contractual employee Jaipal Kaushik, who was fired on corruption charges earlier was reinducted on directions of Sethi as Chief Operating Manager.Rathore has also alleged that contractual employees are being given key positions with financial power which is completely against the service rule. He said such employees are getting travel reimbursements several times on single PNR. He alleged that corrupt officials have allotted shops in Saras Craft Bazaar taking bribe of Rs 20,000 per shops.Rathore said that despite his clear instructions neither FIR was lodged nor any enquiry was initiated.Ministers tiff with Babus1.Rajpal Singh Shekhawat, now industry minister had an uneasy relationship with then JDC Shikhar Agrawal when he was UDH minister.2. PWD minister Yunus didn’t enjoy good rapport with then principal secretary JC Mohanty3.Gajendra Singh Khimsar, now forest minister, entered into tug of war with then energy secretary Alok when he was energy minister.4. Raj kumar Rinwa, now Devasthan minister, complained that he never got his dues as mines minister when Ashok Singhvi was principal secretary mines

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Rajendra Rathore opens can of worms: fires salvo on Sethi