CAG pulls up Maya govt over memorial expenditure

After Sheila Dikshit, it was the turn of Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Mayawati to feel the CAG heat for making huge wasteful and “avoidable” expenditure on memorials after Dalit ideologue B R Ambedkar and BSP founder Kanshiram in the state capital.

The CAG report, which was tabled in the state Assembly on Friday, slammed the UP government for wasting Rs 66 crore on the two memorials —the B R Ambedkar Samajik Parivartan Sthal and Manyavar Kanshiram Smarak Sthal — which were among the dream projects of BSP supremo Mayawati.

The CAG, in its report, said the government chose to get the sand stones sawed and carved in Rajasthan instead of getting it done in the state. The transportation expenses from Lucknow to Rajasthan and back cost the government Rs 15 crore, the report said.

“The government could have saved a lot of money if sawing and carving work was done at Mirzapur/Chunar (famous for stone carving) by engaging local artisans and then transporting the finished products to Lucknow,” the government auditor said in its report.

Financial irregularities
It also pointed out that the revision of the contract resulted in an avoidable expenditure of Rs 22 crore. The two projects were executed by the state-owned Rajkiya Nirman Nigam.

The CAG report said the materials were procured “prematurely” and thus they remained unused for a long period and also increased the cost of the work. It also detected financial irregularities in the execution of the two projects causing loss to the government.

Some jobs were performed at higher rates resulting in wasteful expenditure to the tune of several crores, the report said adding the construction agency never explored ways to reduce the cost of the execution of the projects.

The opposition parties were quick to pounce on Mayawati after the CAG report was tabled.  They also alleged that the Central funds were misused and diverted by the state government to these projects rather than utilising them for developmental works in the state.

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