CBI begins probe into irregularities in 10,000cr NRHM funds

CBI begins probe into irregularities in 10,000cr NRHM funds

The agency has constituted a big special investigating team comprising 26 officers, including five Superintendents of Police under the overall supervision of Additional Director, Joint Director and two DIGs.

"The investigation team will be assisted by experts from banking, accountancy, engineering works and computer forensics and officers dealing with NRHM scheme in Ministry of Health and Family Welfare, Government of India," a CBI spokesperson said here.

The probe pertains to civil works' contracts and medicine procurement of Family Welfare Directorate, Medical Health Directorate, Director Training, State Health Society, State Innovation in Family Planning and Project Agency (SIFPSA), IEC Bureau, Chatrapati Shahuji Maharaj Medical University, UNOPS and others besides funds allocated to Chief Medical Officers of 72 districts of the state.

The action of the agency comes on the directions of the Lucknow Bench of Allahabad High Court given on two Public Interest Litigations filed before it.

"CBI investigation has registered five preliminary enquiries relating to alleged irregularities in the execution and implementation of National Rural Health Mission funds in the State of U.P. since its inception in the year 2005-06 till date," the spokesperson said.

The CBI spokesperson said the NRHM funds to the tune of about Rs 10,000 crore were allocated to Uttar Pradesh for the period 2005-06 till date by the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare.

These funds were spent under various central government schemes by the 72 chief medical officers and other nodal officers involving a large number of beneficiaries.

"A number of these works have been executed through several state PSUs and large number of contractors/firms. The CBI has been asked to complete these enquiry in four months by Hon'ble Allahabad High Court," she said.

A division bench comprising justices Pradeep Kant and Ritu Raj Awasthi had directed that the preliminary inquiry, to be completed within four months, would be conducted covering period from 2005-06 till date.

It directed the state government to hand over and make available all records that might be required by the CBI and render full support and cooperation to the agency.
The Central government was also directed to render full support that might be required, according to the order.

In its order, the bench had observed considering the facts and circumstances of the present case, it was painful to see that a scheme meant for providing quality health services had taken the lives of three CMOs.