Lokayukta indicts Siddiqui,calls for probe by CBI or ED

UP Lokayukta N K Mehrotra held Mayawati government’s most powerful minister Naseemuddin Siddiqui,who holds 12 Cabinet portfolios such as PWD,Excise,Health,and his wife Husna

Written by Express News Service | Lucknow | Published: February 23, 2012 4:11:56 am

UP Lokayukta N K Mehrotra on Wednesday held Mayawati government’s most powerful minister Naseemuddin Siddiqui,who holds 12 Cabinet portfolios such as PWD,Excise,Health,and his wife Husna,who is a BSP MLC,prima facie guilty of money laundering and misuse of their posts,and recommended an inquiry by the CBI or the Enforcement Directorate against both under the Prevention of Corruption Act and Prevention of Money Laundering Act.

Mehrotra made the recommendation in a report to Chief Minister Mayawati. He sought an action-taken report within one month from her. The government’s reaction was not available immediately.

Among the observations made by the Lokayukta in his 929-page report:

* Transactions through which Siddiqui’s relatives bought properties in Lucknow,Barabanki,Banda and Jyotiba Phule Nagar should be probed. Mehrotra found that Husna and other family members bought land at less than market rate to evade stamp duty.

* Siddiqui and his wife amassed disproportionate assets. While the total income of Siddiqui and his wife in last four years,according to their income tax returns,was Rs 1.97 crore,including Rs 1,24,70,759 of Husna and Rs 73,14,437 of Siddiqui. But,in the same period,they had bought properties worth more than Rs 50 crore through benami transactions.

* All transactions made by Husna’s trust QF Educational Institute should be probed into as it was a dummy for money laundering.

* QF Educational Institute existed only on paper,without any functional office,and was being used for money laundering by Husna,who is its secretary.

* While Husna had informed that the total donations received by the institute since its inception in 2006 was Rs 1.82 crore,the office of Registrar Chits,Funds and Societies provided a balance sheet showing donations at Rs 3.62 crore. The donations had been made by about 300 persons,many of whom have been shown as residents outside UP.

A complaint against Siddiqui and his wife was lodged by Lucknow-based journalist J N Shukla. The Lokayukta is investigating two more complaints of corruption against Siddiqui.

Vigilance probe against Kushwaha

The UP government has ordered an inquiry into the corruption charges against former Family Welfare Minister Babu Singh Kushwaha by Vigilance Establishment as was recommended by the Lokayukta last month. “The government has sent the action-taken report,stating that it had ordered the Vigilance Establishment to conduct an inquiry against Kushwaha as per Lokayukta’s recommendation,” said an official. Lokayukta N K Mehrotra in his report sent to CM Mayawati last month had recommended a probe against Kushwaha by the CBI or Vigilance after holding him prima facie guilty of illegally awarding mining contracts in Banda and Mahoba districts and laundering money through his several registered societies.

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