Maya's close aides booked in Dalit memorial scam

Kushwaha, Naseemuddin Siddiqui, among 19 who figure in the FIR

BSP chief Mayawati’s close aide Naseemuddin Siddiqui and former minister Babu Singh Kushwaha were among 19 people booked on Wednesday for their alleged role in the Rs 1,400 crore scam in construction of Dalit memorials and parks in UP.

Along with the two former BSP ministers, former joint director of mining S A Farooqui, former managing director of Rajkiya Nirmaan Nigam C P Singh and 15 engineers have also been named in the FIR, police sources said here.

The FIR was registered with Gomti Nagar police station by vigilance inspector Ram Naresh Rathore.

On December 5 last year, the UP government had given nod to lodge cases against 21 people, including Siddiqui and Kushwaha, in connection with the scam in construction of memorials in the name of Dalit icons during the previous BSP regime.

Besides them, officials of Rajkiya Nirman Nigam and others were indicted by Lokayukta N K Mehrotra in his report submitted in May last year. The Lokayukta had indicted 199 people, including the two ministers, a sitting MLA, several officers and engineers for the irregularities.

In his report, the Lokayukta said irregularities to the tune of Rs 1,400 crore were detected, which was 34 per cent of the total budget for construction of memorials and parks.

He recommended filing of FIRs under the Prevention of Corruption Act and under section 409 of the IPC (criminal breach of trust by public servant) against 19 persons.

For the remaining persons indicted in the report, the Lokayukta recommended that their properties be probed and if these were found disproportionate to their known sources of income, FIRs should also be lodged against them.

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