Shillong: The Meghalaya state unit of Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) on Thursday said that they were still waiting for the local audit report on the alleged misappropriation of Central funds in the Jaintia Hills Autonomous District Council (JHADC) and Garo Hills Autonomous District Council (GHADC).

“Since day 1, I’ve not been happy with the decision of the local audit. I am surprised that till today they have not come out with the report,” said BJP state president Ernest Mawrie.

“These people don’t have a mechanism. They will go and ask the CEM [chief executive member] or the EM [executive member] concerned as to how much money has been received and spent. They don’t have the machinery to dig out, who got the tender and how it is allotted,” added Mawrie.

Mawrie made headlines last year after he went against the ruling Meghalaya Democratic Alliance (MDA), of which BJP is a coalition partner, by making several revelations that corruption is taking place in the two autonomous district councils (ADCs) of the state.

Mawries added that it is not just BJP but even the Hill State People’s Democratic Party (HSPDP) — another coalition partner of the NPP-led MDA government — that has now joined the chorus on corruption in the ADCs.

Speaking with media persons, Mawrie said that he was glad to see that even HSPDP has supported his demand for a CBI probe into the alleged misappropriation of funds.

The BJP state president demanded that there should be a thorough investigation whether due procedures were followed or not because the NITI Aayog guideline clearly states that they have to go through a proper channel.

“It has to be certified by the authority concerned like the chief engineer of PWD and PHE, so on and so forth. Then, it has to be approved by the committee headed by state chief secretary. But here, it seems like it just ends up on the table of the CEM in the ADC concerned and that is how corruption takes place,” alleged Mawrie.

When asked if the corruption charges he made will die down, now that the BJP is part of the GHADC Executive Committee, Mawrie said that they are waiting for the local audit report which the government had promised them.

“So, whether black or white, the report should be placed before the public. However, we are not going to be silent on the issue of corruption in the JHADC and GHADC,” said Mawrie.

Also read | Wish to show honest picture of COVID in Meghalaya: Health director

Earlier, the Meghalaya government had decided to conduct an audit after governor Satya Pal Malik sought a response from CM Conrad K Sangma-led government over the complaints of misappropriation of funds.

Mawrie had demanded a CBI probe into the alleged siphoning of Rs 264 crore by the two councils. He alleged that the funds, allocated under the special assistance grant for the development of under-developed areas, were misappropriated in the name of “ghost” bridges and footpaths and to carry out repair works of official buildings, guest houses, etc.

Leave a comment

Leave a comment