UP govt gets clean chit in alleged plantation scam

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Lucknow, Nov 7 (UNI) The Union Rural Development Department has given a clean chit to Uttar Pradesh government in the alleged planatation scam in seven districts of Bundelkhand involving a sum of Rs 409 crore.

The issue was raised by the UP Congress Commitee through a FIR lodged in the month of September last in which it was alleged that the executing staff in Jhansi, Mahoba, Lalitpur, Banda, Chitrakot, Jalaun and Hamirpur districts had misappropriated Rs 409 crore out of which Rs 209 crore was diverted from National Rural Employment Guarantee (NREGS) scheme.

The flaunting of minimum wages for the labourers involved in the work was also alleged in the complaint copy of which was sent to the Centre as well. On the basis of this complaint the Centre had probed the matter through its two teams.

Releasing the reports of two probe teams of Union Rural Development Ministry comprised two each National Level Monitors this evening, the state chief secretary Atul Kumar Gupta said the probe found nothing which could amount to any irregularity in plantation of ten crore saplings in Bundelkhand.

The physical verification by the probe team also found the survival rate of the saplings as high as 95-97 per cent, he said.

The Central teams not only absolved the seven state government departments namely Rural Development,Horticulture,PWD,power, Irrigation,Urban Development and Forest of all the charges in this connection but also described the scheme as very useful in conservation of environment.

The UP chief secretary said the clean chit to the state government clearly proved the charges were baselss and politically motivated.

UNI SB MB RSC AKJ VC1835

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