Friday, April 28, 2017

State Lokayukta reserves orders.

The Tribune: Ambala: Chandigadh: Friday, April 28, 2017.
Justice NK Aggarwal, Lokayukta, Haryana, has reserved orders in the Ambala MGNREGA scam in which about Rs 5 crore was allegedly embezzled while planting saplings and developing herbal parks in the district
While counsel for five IAS officers denied any wrongdoing on their part , PP Kapoor, Panipat-based RTI activist and petitioner in the case, demanded the registration of a criminal case against these officers
Kapoor had moved the Lokayukta on January 31, 2015, alleging that the state government was not taking action against IAS officers Sameer Pal Srow, Mohammad Shayin, Sumedha Kataria and Renu Phulia. Another IAS officer R P Bhardwaj has since retired
In January, 2015, the State Vigilance Bureau(SVB) registered a case against nine Ambala Forest Department officials, including then DFO (territorial), in connection with the NREGA scam where Rs. 4.99 crore were allegedly embezzled while planting mass saplings and developing herbal parks in the district.
The SVB action followed the orders of Chief Minister Manohar Lal Khattar, who directed the officials to register a case which had been lingering on for several years.
The case was registered against Jag Mohan Sharma, Gokul Sharma, Rajesh Rana, Prashant Sharma, Vinod Kumar, Kalyan Sharma, Deepak Kumar, Chandar Mohan and Surender Kumar under Section 409, 420, 467, 468, 471, 120B, 204, IPC, and section (13 (1) (d) of the Prevention of Corruption Act.
As per the FIR, Rs 25.13 crore was allotted to the Ambala Forest Department for various development works in rural areas under the scheme. A fraud of Rs 55.5 lakh was revealed in developing herbal parks. Similarly, embezzlement to the tune of Rs 1.7 crore was found in developing nurseries, Rs 1.9 crore in making ‘kutcha’ passageways, Rs 61.68 in labour expenses, Rs 15 lakh in development works at Mandor and Sahzadpur villages and Rs 2.28 lakh in excess construction of concrete paths in herbal parks.
Earlier, two ADCs had sent their reports to the government mentioning misappropriation of MGNREGA funds.