Health project irregularities in Orissa to be probed

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Bhubaneswar, Jan 14 (UNI) The Orissa government today constituted a three-member fact finding team under the Chairmanship of Chief Secretary Ajit Kumar Tripathy to inquire the alleged irregularities in the implementation of the world bank sponsored Orissa Health Service Development Project (OHSDP).

Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik directed the team to submit its report within three months.

Besides the Chief Secretary , the other two members of the team were Development Commissioner R N Bohidar and Agriculture Production Commissioner S P Nanda.

Mr Patnaik said stern action would be taken against the persons found guilty by the team.

The team was constituted after the World Bank in its detail implementation report alleged largescale irregularities in the implementation of the project in Orissa.

Earlier the CAG in its 2005 report had also alleged irregularities in the implementation of the project. The Rs 415 crore project, which started in 1997, was originally scheduled to be completed by March 2003, but the project was extended for two more years due to slow progress.

The CAG in its report had said the consultants appointed by the government to supervise the work of 136 constructions were paid their full payment amounting to more than Rs three crore even though only 26 per cent of the total project work were completed by 2003.

Equipment purchased were kept idle and no significant progress was made for the waste management one of the main component of the project.

Irregularities were also noticed in the construction as well as purchase of equipment, the CAG report said.

UNI BD-DP SJC MIR RS2135

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