CAG report confirms NRHM fund swindle in UP

CAG report confirms NRHM fund swindle in UP

Officials allegedly misappropriated Rs 4,938 crore from 2005 to 2011

In a severe indictment of the erstwhile Mayawati government in Uttar Pradesh, a CAG report said that huge financial irregularities had been found in the use of funds provided to the state by the Centre for the National Rural Health Mission (NRHM) scheme.

The report, which was tabled in the state assembly on Wednesday, said that an estimated Rs 4,938 crore had been misappropriated by the state officials between 2005-2011. It also detected large scale financial irregularities in the utilisation of the NRHM funds.

The report has found fault with the procurement of ambulances and medical kits and holding of health camps in the state under the scheme. Irregularities were also detected in the prevention of blindness programme.

The CAG said that funds were allotted to non-registered firms and the officials also failed to maintain proper balance sheet of funds spent under the scheme. Fake health camps were organised and payments were made, it said.

The CBI, which is probing the NRHM scam, has filed 13 cases charging several senior officials for their involvement in the multi-crore scam.

During the past few months as many as seven UP health officials, including two chief medical officers, having some connections with the scam have either been killed or died under mysterious circumstances.

The then UP chief minister Mayawati had sacked two ministers-health minister Anant Mishra and family welfare minister Babu Singh Kushwaha-after the death of former deputy chief medical officer Y S Sachan inside the Lucknow jail under mysterious circumstances.

While Kushwaha is now in jail after being arrested by the CBI, Mishra has also been quizzed several times by the central investigating agency. Fingers are being pointed towards Mayawati also in the scam.

The scheme was launched in 2005 with the objective of strengthening health services in the rural areas. The funds were to be used to construct health centres in rural areas and ensure they were stocked with medicines and working equipment.

The Allahabad HC had directed the CBI to inquire into the scam.

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