Rs 55 crore of 'Damar scam' not collected

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Raipur, Sep 2 (UNI) Chhattisgarh Congress President Dhanendra Sahu today alleged that the state government was in nexus with contractors responsible for the 'Damar' scam and had not collected Rs 55 crore from them.

Mr Sahu told a press conference here today that the state cabinet had taken a decision four years ago that Rs 56 crore would be collected from the contractors.

However, he alleged that the decision was put aside due to a nexus by the Minister of State for Public Works Department.

He said payment worth crores of rupees had been made to the same contractors during the period raising questions whether the government was really serious about collecting the amount.

Mr Sahu claimed that the departmental minister had reduced the amount to be collected from these contractors from Rs 56 crore to Rs 36 crore although cabinet decisions could be changed by the cabinet only.

Meanwhile, the government had to pay interest of Rs 22 crore to the Asian Development Bank the due to non-collection of the amount.

He pointed out that the quality of roads had not deteriorated although more amount had been provided to the department.

The Congress leader wanted a clarification for the increase in cost of construction of roads from Rs 10-15 lakh per km during the previous Congress regime to Rs 85 lakh per km at present.

He said the Congress would thoroughly probe the 'Damar' scam and other scams related to road construction.

UNI AS-PS MIR UCS1808

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