Friday, Oct 31, 2014

After Delhi govt’s order, ACB files FIR in Rs 90-crore CWG street light scam

Govt said ACB has been told to conduct a thorough probe into the scam as there have been "strong findings" in it by CAG. Govt said ACB has been told to conduct a thorough probe into the scam as there have been "strong findings" in it by CAG.
Express News Service | New Delhi | Posted: February 6, 2014 6:09 pm | Updated: February 6, 2014 7:50 pm

The Anti-Corruption Branch (ACB) of Delhi on Thursday filed fresh FIR in the Rs 90-crore street-lightning project for the 2010 Commonwealth Games that were implemented during Sheila Dikshit’s reign.

The move comes on a day when the AAP government, headed by Arvind Kejriwal, directed the anti-corruption branch to lodge an FIR in CWG related projects which a panel headed by a former CAG had indicted the then Chief Minister Sheila Dikshit.

The government had particularly asked ACB to probe the alleged irregularities in street light projects in which the Prime Minister-appointed Shunglu Committee had questioned certain decisions made by Dikshit.

After a Cabinet meeting, senior Minister Manish Sisodia said the ACB has been told to conduct a thorough probe into the scam as there have been “strong findings” in it by CAG and Shunglu Committee.

“The ACB has been directed to conduct an independent and thorough investigation and take action. ACB will file FIR in the case. Our motive is not to target a particular person,” Sisodia said. Registration of an FIR is the first step in the filing of formal charges.

Thursday’s move was bound to needle its ally Congress.

Law Minister Somnath Bharti said a number of Commonwealth Games related projects that were implemented during the reign of Dikshit will be probed by the ACB which functions under the Delhi Government.

This is the second move against Dikshit by Kejriwal government this week. On Monday, it had recommended to President Pranab Mukherjee to issue an “advisory” to Dikshit based on a Lokayukta order for alleged wrongdoings in grant of provisional regularisation certificates to unauthorised colonies in 2008.

The Lokayukta had recommended issuance of advisory to caution her against repeating such wrongdoings.

Sisodia said investigation into the street lighting scam was closed at the level of preliminary inquiry though there were “strong findings” in the case by CAG and Shunglu Committee.

The Shunglu Committee and CAG in their reports had mentioned about flouting of laid down rules at the instance of Dikshit in awarding of contract to certain firms for procurement of street lights. Dikshit had vehemently rejected findings of the reports.

“It was strongly mentioned in the reports that many ineligible companies were made eligible through back doors and contracts were given to them. The then government had wasted Rs 31 crore,” alleged Sisodia.

After taking over, Kejriwal had announced that his government will investigate all corruption cases, particularly the CWG scam.

(With PTI inputs)

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