May 9, 2013 3:26:28 am
An executive engineer of Uttar Pradesh Jal Nigam (UPJN),R B Srivastava,posted at Sant Kabir Nagar has alleged that he was forcibly made to sign cheques worth Rs 14.86 lakh by a contractor and supporters of Samajwadi Party (SP) MLA Algu Chauhan,at the residence of the legislator at Khalilabad.
In a letter,Srivastava apprised Managing Director of UPJN A K Mittal of the incident and requested for a transfer from the district. Later,Mittal sent a chief engineer rank official to the district to probe the incident.
Meanwhile,the contractor,Ram Vriksha Yadav,had withdrawn the whole amount from the bank. As the contractor also has an account in the same bank,the bank later managed to recover Rs 12.86 lakh. Still Rs 2 lakh has not been recovered, said P K Tyagi,Chief Engineer,Gorakhpur,who probed the incident. Tyagi also confirmed that prima facie the charges of threatening by the contractor appears to be true. No one will issue a cheque for a work which is already under scanner. The executive engineer had already given a written complaint to the department, he stated.
Mittal,meanwhile,said that he has recommended transfer of Srivastava. The file has been sent to the chairmans office and his approval is awaited, Mittal added.
Cabinet Minister Azam Khan is the chairman of UPJN.
Meanwhile,Srivastava claimed that he had submitted a complaint to the local police but his FIR was not registered. Superintendent of Police,Sant Kabir Nagar,Rampal,however,denied Srivastavas claim. No such application has been received, he said.
Srivastava claimed that he was continuously pressurised by Ram Vriksha for making payments for the construction of soak pits for handpumps during 2010-11 and 2011-12. Nearly Rs 4 crore were diverted from other heads to construct these soak pits for 2,553 handpumps. It was not possible for me to make payments. There were serious anomalies and it was proved in the departmental enquiry. Even the then executive engineer,Ram Lochan,was suspended on February 19 for the lapses, said Srivastava.
Srivastava stated that he was asked by MLA Chauhan to meet him at his residence in Khalilabad on April 27,along with the papers related to payment of the handpumps. When I reached the MLAs house there were several supporters,including Ram Vriksha. Chauhan first browsed through the papers and asked me to make payments and left the room, he stated. Srivastava claimed that his mobile phone was snatched by Ram Vriksha and they forcibly made him sign cheques worth Rs 14.86 lakh.
Chauhan,who represents Dhanghata seat in Sant Kabir Nagar,meanwhile claimed that Srivastava is cooking up a story. He never came to meet me at my residence, he added.
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