Groups welcome SC order

Aizawl, Feb. 12: Anti-corruption groups in Mizoram have welcomed the recent Supreme Court order dismissing the state government's plea to stop the CBI investigation into a PWD financial scam.

In 2010, Gauhati High Court had allowed a CBI inquiry into the allegations made through a PIL filed by the Society for Social Action (SOSA), an anti-corruption group. But as the CBI investigations were almost completed, the state government had petitioned the Supreme Court to stop the inquiry alleging that the affidavits were false.

The Supreme Court told the Mizoram government's lawyers in the latest hearing on February 8 that "you should be happy that the investigations will prove the allegations to be false" and rejected their plea.

If the allegations are proved, many top engineers and even the then chief minister Zoramthanga are likely to be directly implicated.

The president of the Society for Social Action (SOSA), Sailova Sailo, told The Telegraph, "We are delighted that the Supreme Court has dismissed the government's petition and the CBI inquiry can continue now."

He said the group had filed the PIL seeking CBI inquiry into the misuse of Prime Minister Gram Sadak Yojana (PMGSY) funds during 2000-05. The PIL said the PWD had fraudulently "spent" crores of rupees on existing roads, which were shown in official documents as "new" roads.

"I was the director of transport and I vouch for the fact that we already had Mizoram state transport buses plying on these roads shown as 'new' by the PWD during that period," F. Hmingthanga, a retired Mizoram Civil Service officer, and general secretary of the group said.

"Why should the present Congress government, which came to power in 2008 on the manifesto that they would pursue all these scams, move the Supreme Court to stop the CBI inquiry when it was the previous government which would be implicated?" asked Sailo.

He said if the government in power were true to the public they would not have tried to stop the CBI inquiry. "These parties are all in it together to cheat the public," he said.

The group also questioned why the government played favourites while suspending their officials facing anti-corruption inquiries. "The government has so far refused to suspend the PWD engineers in this present case and several other inquiries," it said.

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