Citing a CAG report, which indicates Union Minister Smriti Irani for making payment of Rs. 6 crores from funds of MPLAD without issuing a tender, therefore, on Thursday, Congress demand for her sacking and also lodged an FIR against BJP MP from Gujarat.
Randeep Singh Surjewala, a spokesman of Congress, tweeted pointing to the findings of CAG, “Time has come to sack Union Minister Smriti Irani and lodge an FIR against her for proper investigation under Prevention of Corruption Act, and different provisions of Indian Penal Code.”
Mr. Surjewala continued, “This is a clear-cut case of misuse of office and fraud vis-a-vis public money and Prime Minister Narendra Modi should immediately sack Irani and order for initiating criminal proceedings against her.”
The CAG report on social and general sector for the year ended March 2017, has accused Ms. Irani with “injudicious awarding of works under MPLADS to an NGO without inviting tenders resulted in an irregular payment of Rs. 5.93 crore including fraudulent payment of Rs. 84.53 lakh to the NGO.”
The Union Textile Minister Smriti Irani has selected Anand district as her nodal district for execution of works under MPLAD scheme.
The CAG report reads, “Audit observed that the selection of the NGO (Sharda Majoor Kamdar Co-operative Society), as implementing authority was in contravention of the scheme guidelines and government instructions, as no tender procedure was followed for its selection.”
Reporting the matter to BJP Government in Gujarat, the CAG has recommended probe of all works done by NGOs.
It added, “Since the tendering process, the scope of work awarded and payment processes were violated, therefore audit is of the view that these works are susceptible to fraudulent and irregular payments.”
“Audit recommends that the State Government should investigate all the works carried out by the NGO and fix responsibility on the Government officials responsible for the negligence. The matter was reported to the Government (September 2017). Reply is awaited (February 2018),” added the report.
Congress Gujarat MLA Shaktisinh Gohil said that the NGO was selected by Smriti Irani, which is supposed to be a cooperative society of construction laborers but all of them belongs to BJP.
He further referred to a letter by Anand district collector, which was written on June 20, 2017, written to General Administration Department, Deputy Secretary of Gujarat has pointed out the irregularities and fraud being conducted under the grants received through MPLAd funds.
Gujarat Congress MLA Amit Chavda has also registered a PIL in Gujarat High Court, demands an FIR against Ms. Irani.