Minister of State for Agriculture Manoj Kumar Pandey and Bachhrawan MLA Ramlal Akela,who appeared before Lokayukta N K Mehrotra on Monday for recommending the name of a de-registered cooperative society for executing works from their MLAs local area development fund,blamed the Rae Bareli chief development officer (CDO) and district rural development agency officials for not checking the status of the society.
Mehrotra is probing the works allotted to the de-registered cooperative society,Rajya Sahkari Nirman Evam Vikas Sangh,which had also been recommended for works from their MLALAD funds by four Samajwadi Party MLAs Pandey,Akela,Devendra Pratap Singh,MLA from Sareni; and Surendra Vikram Singh,MLA from Harchandrapur.
As per government rules,no private or cooperative societies are eligible for executing works from MLALAD funds.
The statements of Pandey and Akela were recorded on Monday while two other MLAs are slated to appear before Mehrotra on Tuesday.
Mehrotra said Pandey claimed the chairman of the cooperative society,Ashok Tripathi had requested him to recommend his institution for the works from his MLALAD fund. Pandey said after he sent the recommendation letter to the CDO,he should have checked the status of the society and eligibility of the allocation,Mehrotra said. Pandey had claimed that earlier,when he recommended some agencies,the CDO had refused to accept saying they were not eligible. However,this time he did not.
Mehrotra said a similar reply was given by Akela,who said it was the responsibility of the CDO and district rural development agency officials to check the eligibility of the society.
Akela claimed he had recommended the work to the cooperative society after its chairman requested him to do so,Lokayukta said,adding that the MLAs also claimed that they had not exerted any pressure on the CDO for giving the work to the society.
Mehrotra has summoned the chairman of the society on Wednesday and CDO
Dr Akhtar Riaz on Thursday.