Minister denies allegations of misappropriation

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Hyderabad, Mar 5 (UNI) Andhra Pradesh Health Minister S Chandrasekhar today denied any misappropriation of funds by the state AIDS Control Society (APSACS) in the installation of condom vending machines of the Thiruvananthapuram-based Hindustan Latex Limited (HLL).

Replying to Congress member P Shankar during the Question Hour, the minister turned down the demand for a 'House Committee' to probe into the issue and said the APSACS periodically checked the functioning of the machines and only after verification, the half-yearly payments were made to HLL. All the machines were functioning properly, he added.

The APSACS signed an MoU with HLL in September 2005 for installing 500 such machines on lease in places identified by the APSACS for social marketing of condoms, at a cost of Rs 17.50 lakh.

As per the MoU, HLL has to repair any faulty machines within 48 hours and if it fails to refill condoms for one week, the APSACS can withold payment for that period.

UNI SM VA SJ AKJ ND1728

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