RD fund misuse in Mizoram referred to Ati-Corruption Bureau

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Aizawl, Oct 1(UNI) Mizoram Chief Secretary Haukhum Hauzel today admitted that there had been gross misappropriation of public money under the state Rural Department (RD), adding the case had been referred to the Anti-Corruption Bureau(ACB) after receiving the Chief Minister's approval.

Mr Hauzel's statement came after the Zoram Nationalist Party's vigilante committee threw light on the misappropriation of public money worth crores of rupees.

The party's findings were based on the special audit reports conducted by Accounts and Treasuries Department at the instruction of the Finance Department after learning that there had been misappropriation of funds in the RD.

'' Since the misappropriation of public money involved crores of rupees, this is a very serious case. I have found it more appropriate to refer it to the ACB to file a criminal case than conducting a mere departmental inquiry,'' Mr Hauzel told newspersons here.

''After going through the audit reports carefully, the misappropriation of fund can be divided into two categories. One is misappropriation of government money as well as non-observation of rules and regulation, while the other is negligence,'' Mr Hauzel explained.

He added that the second case might be subjected to departmental inquiry.

Superintendent of police(ACB) K Amon informed that he had directed his team to complete the inquiry before October 15.

The special audit found that Rs 39 lakh were drawn without the expenditure sanction by the RD department. The amount entered in the cash book was Rs 28 lakh, while the whereabouts of Rs 11 lakh remained unknown.

The special audit also revealed unauthorised opening of bank account amounting to Rs 892 lakh, unlawful collection of money under BADP from Block Development Officers worth Rs 70 lakh and double/triple payments on same construction works aggregating to Rs 50 lakh.

Other discrepancies mentioned in the audit included transfer of Rs 14 lakh from District Rural Development Agency (DRDA) Lawngtlai to the directorate bypassing the cash book as well as advance and irregular deduction of Border Area Development Programme (BADP) fund amounting to Rs 43 lakh.


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