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Friday, January 21, 2022

Goa: CM Sawant sets up committee to probe alleged irregularities in PWD recruitments

The recruitment would be kept on hold till the committee submits its report.

By: Express News Service | Panaji |
Updated: December 18, 2021 7:32:32 am
Goa Chief Minister Pramod Sawant at Goa Niwas in New Delhi. (Express file photo by Amit Mehra)

Goa Chief Minister Pramod Sawant on Friday said that a three-member committee had been appointed to probe into the alleged irregularities in recruitments in the state Public Works Department (PWD). The process of recruitment has been put on hold in the interim.

“A committee of principal secretary Puneet Goel, Special Secretary, Vigilance Ankita Anand and Director, Vigilance has been set up to probe the PWD recruitment issue,” Sawant said.

Panaji BJP MLA Atanasio Monserrate had alleged that there were irregularities in recruitment in the PWD and claimed that jobs were being ‘sold’. He had made an allegation against his party colleague and PWD minister Deepak Pauskar.

“I am making a direct allegation that the minister of PWD… has taken money from people to get their names selected. I have proof to show people have paid Rs 25 lakh to Rs 30 lakh to him, and he has sold jobs to the highest bidder….I have people who will tell that minister has taken money,” Monserrate said. Claiming that this was a scam to the tune of Rs 70 core, he added that the list of the selected candidates need to be withdrawn immediately. “The chief minister has ordered an inquiry. This is a good sign,” said Monserrate.

Pauskar had, however, refuted the allegations. “The allegations are baseless. He had recommended some candidates (for jobs) to me and asked for them to be included in the list. I cannot make any recommendations. The results of the examination held for junior and technical assistant engineers were announced by Goa Engineering College and we had declared them. We have no role in that. We cannot recommend any candidate. Allegations can be made by anyone. Tell them to show proof. The 368 jobs were given as per the results of the polytechnic; those published in the gazette are all done as per the rules. As the minister, I have not interfered at any stage,” Pauskar had said.

The turmoil within the BJP ranks had come at a time when legislative assembly polls are about two months away.

Panaji MLA Monserrate was among the 10 MLAs who had defected to the BJP from Congress in 2019. Pauskar was one of the two Maharashtrawadi Gomantak Party (MGP) MLAs, who had similarly switched to the BJP in 2019.

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