In a fresh tirade against the Puducherry government, Lt Governor Kiran Bedi said the Central Vigilance Commission has asked for a report regarding alleged irregularities in procuring two luxury boats by the Puducherry Tourism Development Corporation (PTDC) in 2015. The CVC’s action follows a representation made to it by the Lt Governor seeking a probe into the matter.
In a WhatsApp message to media persons last night, Bedi said after perusing a report in a section of the media stating that the two boats worth Rs 1.15 crore procured by the PTDC remained idle, she had obtained a status report on the boats. She said the status report revealed “irregularities in the purchase of the boats which warranted investigation and inquiry”.
The Lt Governor said as an administrator of the Union Territory, she had exercised her quasi judicial powers under Rule 44 of the Business Rules governing Puducherry administration to seek a probe into the purchase of the boats. She had written to Central Vigilance Commissioner K V Chowdary on August 19 and had stated that a prima facie case was made out of “serious irregularity in the purchase of the boats for the PTDC calling for investigation into the matter”.
She also circulated the copy of her letter to the CVC to reporters via WhatsApp. The former IPS officer came out with the message in the backdrop of Chief Minister V Narayanasamy’s statement last week that “someone from the administration had written a complaint to the CVC on the alleged irregularities in purchase of the boats.”
Narayanasamy had said, “none can bypass the elected government and rush to the Centre for a probe without the knowledge of the minister concerned or the secretary.” He did not identify as to who the ‘person’ was who wrote the letter to the CVC, despite repeated queries from media persons.
The Lt Governor in her message said, “From CBI on medical admissions, it is now the CVC on issues relating to tourism. The CVC has called for a report from the chief secretary within three weeks.” Bedi also reiterated her plea that Puducherry required an independent chief vigilance officer and a branch of CBI. The Narayanasamy-led Congress government in Puducherry has been at loggerheads with the Lt Governor over a host of issues.