Gujarat Congress seeks CBI inquiry in IAS officer case

Ahmedabad, Feb 18 (PTI) Gujarat Congress presidentSiddarth Patel today demanded that investigation of a caseagainst arrested senior IAS officer Pradeep Sharma should betransferred to CBI as he has levelled serious allegationsagainst Gujarat chief minister Narendra Modi.

"Sharma, a former district collector of Kutch, has in aletter to state chief secretary A K Jyoti demanded that thechief minister should also be included as a co-accused in thecase in which he is arrested. That case should be immediatelytransferred to the CBI," Patel said.

According to the police case, Sharma, while he wascollector of Kutch district between 2003 and 2006, hadallegedly sold government land in Varshamedi of Anjar talukato Welspun Company at half the price.

The FIR against him said that as collector Sharma hadpassed multiple orders beyond his authority, selling 80,000 sqft land to Welspun for Rs 12 lakh.

Patel said, "In his letter, Sharma has pointed out thatthe chairman of Welspun company B K Goenka during theinauguration ceremony of the company''s premises in Kutch inwhich Modi was also present had said that the chief ministerhad promised to give all the facilities for starting theirunit in Kutch".

"And in return, Sharma has mentioned in the letter, thecompany gave two cheques of Rs 50 lakh and Rs 35 lakh forcelebrations of a government-function called Sarad Utsavin Kutch. Though there are no proofs of such transactions butin this case cheques were issued in a name of a trust," Patelalleged.

Sharma is behind bars in the case at present.

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