CAG censures Goa Housing Department for Rs 6.70 cr loss

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Panaji, Aug 21 (UNI) The Comptroller and Auditor General (CAG) of India has censured the Housing Department of Goa for Rs 6.70 crore loss in disposal of land near the historic fort area of Reis Magos in North Goa.

The CAG in its report for the year ending March 31, 2007 pointed out that the transaction was done ''in contravention'' of the Forest Conservation Act, 1980.

The audit scrutiny revealed that the Board failed to adopt the market rate of Rs 1,500 per square metre, while disposing the land at Rs 501 per square metre, causing the huge loss.

Chief Minister Digambar Kamat had submitted copies of the report to the Goa Legislative Assembly during the ongoing budget session.

The department's explanation that the government had fixed the land cost at Rs 500 per square metre in June 2003, was not tenable as it had not considered the ''increasing trend in land cost and the market rate, while fixing the minimum offset price,'' the report noted.

UNI BM RN AE DS1303

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