Home Ministry seeks report from Delhi govt on PWD minister

Delhi map
New Delhi, May 1: In more trouble for Delhi PWD Minister Raj Kumar Chauhan, Union Home Ministry has directed city government to file a detailed report about his alleged involvement in protecting a leading resort in a tax evasion case for which the Lokayukta had recommended his removal.

The Home Ministry's direction to the Delhi Government came nearly two months after the Lokayukta Justice Manmohan Sarin, in an unprecedented order, had recommended to President Pratibha Patil to "withdraw her pleasure" for the Minister to continue in office as he "misused" his official position and indicted him for misconduct of "grave nature".

While the decision about Chauhan's fate lies with the President, who has three months to decide on the issue, top sources in the city government said a detailed report on the issue would be sent to the Home Ministry within a couple of days.

"We have received a communication from the Home Ministry on the Lokayukta order against Raj Kumar Chauhan.

"A detailed report is being sent," top sources in Delhi Government told PTI.

The communication from the Home Ministry, officials said, is part of the decision making process by the President which is expected to be completed by the end of May.

Justice Sarin's order in late February had come in a case pertaining to Chauhan's alleged involvement in influencing a team of tax officials when they were carrying out a survey at the premises of Tivoli Garden resort in South Delhi in February last year.

The opposition BJP has been pressing for Chauhan''s removal since issuance of the order by the Lokayukta and had even targeted Chief Minister Sheila Dikshit for not sacking him.

Chauhan, who represents Mangopuri Assembly constituency in Outer Delhi, is considered close to Dikshit and was given the Urban Development portfolio in the recent reshuffle of the Cabinet even as he was facing criticism for alleged irregularities in certain CWG projects implemented by his Public Works Department.

The CBI yesterday registered a case against some officials of the Public Works Department (PWD) and a few firms in connection with alleged irregularities in the project for construction of the Rs 620 crore Barapullah Nullah flyover for the Commonwealth Games.


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