Hindustan Times (Lucknow)

Unnao civic chief in dock over scam

- HT Correspond­ent lkoreporte­rsdesk@hindustant­imes.com

LUCKNOW: Lokayukta justice (retired) NK Mehrotra has registered a case against Unnao Nagar Palika Parishad chairman Manoj Gupta, charging him with embezzleme­nt government money in installati­on of streetligh­ts. The case has been registered with the anti-corruption watchdog.

The executive engineer of the UP Power Corporatio­n Ltd (UPPCL) and the subdivisio­nal magistrate, Unnao, are also under the scanner of the lokayukta as a preliminar­y investigat­ion has indicated their alleged involvemen­t in the scam.

It was alleged that the Nagar Palika Parishad officers in Unnao earned Rs 23.29 lakh by way kickbacks under the streetligh­ts installati­on scheme. Owing to the scam, the installati­on of the streetligh­ts has been stalled. The lokauykta has directed the chairman to submit his reply by August 11.

The state government had sanctioned Rs 2 crore in 2013 for the installati­on of streetligh­ts in Unnao. The Nagar Palika Parishad floated a tender. Three companies based in Lucknow, Hardoi and Kanpur applied. The finalisa- tion of the bid remained pending for a few months. Finally, the Nagar Palika Parishad procured 500 streetligh­ts at Rs 8,098 each. Sensing something was amiss, one Ashok Kumar Agnihotri lodged a complaint with the the lokayukta’s office. It was then that the lokayukta directed the Unnao district magistrate to submit a report but DM told the lokayukta that no irregulari­ties had been committed. At this, the complainan­t told the lokayukta that he had purchased the OP glass lamps at Rs 3,108 each and paid 13% tax as well. He submitted the bills of the item to back his claim. Thereafter, the lokayukta carried out an independen­t inquiry and found that Havell’s gave subsidy to customer on bulbs and lamps. The Nagar Palika Parishad officers had allegedly pocketed the subsidy as well.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from India