Allahabad HC seeks progress report in ‘memorial scam’ probe National

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Lucknow, Sep 20 (IANS) The Allahabad High Court on Thursday sought the progress report of a vigilance probe into an alleged multi-crore scam in the building of monuments and parks when Mayawati was the Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister between 2007 and 2012.

A bench of Chief Justice D.B. Bhonsle and Justice Yashwant verma gave the state one week to submit the progress report.

The court gave the directions while hearing a public interest litigation by Shashikant Pandey of Mirzapur who claimed a multi-crore scam in the construction of Ambedkar Smarak Parivartan Sthal, Manyavar Kanshiram Smarak Sthal, Eco Park, Gautambuddha Upwan, Ramabai Ambedkar grounds, Smriti Upwan in state capital Lucknow and the Ambedkar Park in Noida.

The petitioner quoted the Lokayukta report on corruption of Rs 1,400 crore in the construction of these monuments and said that the ombudsman had sought a CBI probe.

BSP supremo Mayawati, her confidants and former Ministers Babu Singh Kushwaha and Naseemuddin Siddiqui and 12 legislators were accused in the matter.

More than 100 engineers and government employees, officers of the Noida Development Authority, Nirmal Nigam and Public Works Department were accused of involvement in the case.

Mayawati had allegedly taken personal interest in the construction of these monuments, named after Dalit icons and Rs 4,500 crore was earmarked for the projects in the state budget.

After the Lokayukta report was submitted, then Samajwadi party government led by Akhilesh Yadav had lodged an FIR in 2014.

Investigations had allegedly found that pink stone used was supplied from Mirzapur in Uttar Pradesh though it was shown in records as sourced from Rajasthan and false billing.

The Lokayukta report pointed out that while labourers and machines used for cutting stones were hired from Lucknow, the payments made were allegedly ten times the normal wages/charges.

The Vigilance Department is investigation the matter.

After Akhilesh Yadav stormed to power in Uttar Pradesh in 2012, he had vowed to bring Mayawati to book but after some time the matter was put in the cold store. For now, the two bitter rivals are talking of an electoral alliance in the 2019 general elections.

The BJP government too in the past one-and-a-half years has done little in the matter.

–IANS

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