Updated: July 8, 2022 5:24:44 am
The CBI Thursday arrested the executive director of the Power Grid Corporation and five office bearers of Tata Projects Ltd in a case of bribery. The agency is currently carrying out search operations at 11 locations across the country in connection with the case.
Sources said some employees of Tata Projects had been caught offering bribes to B S Jha, the Executive Director of Power Grid Corporation. During searches, the CBI recovered RS 93 lakh from Jha’s residence. Among those arrested from Tata Projects are Desraj Pathak, Executive VP and R S Singh, assistant VP.
“The company has bagged tenders pertaining to North Eastern Region Power System Improvement Project (NERPSIP) and the Comprehensive Scheme for Arunachal Pradesh and Sikkim, from Power Grid Corporation,” a CBI spokesperson said.
According to the Ministry of Power, the project is related to the development of the power sector in the North East and is based on the “Pasighat Proclamation on Power” released during the first Sectoral Summit of North Eastern Council at Pasighat in Arunachal Pradesh in January 2007.
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“Under the subject project, implementation of the scheme in six states of NER viz. Assam, Meghalaya, Tripura, Mizoram, Manipur and Nagaland was envisaged through funding from World Bank/Govt. of India. Further, implementation in Sikkim & Arunachal Pradesh was envisaged under a separate project funded by Govt. of India,” the website of the Ministry of Power says.
According to the Ministry, the scheme was initially approved in December 2014 as a Central Sector Plan Scheme of the Ministry of Power and is being funded with the assistance of World Bank fund and by the Government of India through the Budget support of Ministry of Power on a 50:50 basis (World Bank: Gol) except for the capacity building component for Rs 89 crore, which will be entirely funded by the Centre.
In 2020, after the Cabinet approved, Rs 6,700 crore as revised estimate for the project, the ministry had said, “The main objective of the project is the government’s commitment for the total economic development of North Eastern Region and to strengthen the Intra-State Transmission and Distribution Infrastructure in the North East Region. Implementation of this scheme will create a reliable power grid and improve NER states’ connectivity to the upcoming load centers and thus extend the benefits of the grid connected power to all categories of consumers of beneficiaries in the North Eastern Region.”
“The scheme shall also increase the per capita power consumption of these States, and shall contribute to the total economic development of the North-Eastern Region. Implementing agencies are hiring a considerable number of local manpower during their construction works, generating a lot of employment for skilled and unskilled manpower of North-Eastern Region,” the statement added.
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