Tripura police to arrest ex-chief secy from Delhi in PWD scam

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Agartala, Oct 23 (IANS) The Tripura police on Wednesday said it was taking steps to arrest former state chief secretary Y.P. Singh in connection with the multi-crore PWD scam in which former PWD minister Badal Choudhury and former PWD Chief Engineer Sunil Bhowmik have already been arrested.

A senior police official said the Crime Branch has undertaken necessary legal steps to arrest Y.P. Singh, who was principal secretary in-charge of the Public Works Department in 2008-09, from his Delhi residence.

“A team of Crime Branch officials will go to Delhi soon to arrest Singh,” said a senior police official refusing to be identified.

The Crime Branch has arrested Badal Choudhury and Sunil Bhowmik alleging “huge extra payments for execution of 13 developmental projects.” However, both are now admitted in hospitals.

Choudhury, whom the police had been searching for frantically since October 16 in the alleged scam, was found at a private hospital late on Monday night. His bail petition is likely to coming up for hearinf in the Tripura High Court on Thursday.

The Bharatiya Janata Party-led Biplab Kumar Deb government had suspended nine policemen, including an IPS officer and a Deputy Superintendent of Police (DSP), and transferred six senior police officers, after it failed to arrest Choudhury, an eight term MLA and former MP of the CPI-M.

According to Law and Education Minister Ratan Lal Nath, the PWD under the previous Left Front government in 2008-09 clubbed 13 projects — five bridges, five buildings and three road projects — and implemented them at Rs 638 crore on a cost plus basis (limited up to a maximum of 10 per cent of the esteemed cost).

Terming the issue as the “biggest scam in the history of Tripura”, Nath said that a total of Rs 228 crore had been siphoned off.

Communist Party of India-Marxist (CPI-M) leaders said the BJP government had hatched a conspiracy to malign the previous Left government (1993-2018) and Choudhury for political mileage. CPI-M Tripura Secretary Gautam Das said the party will fight the “political vendetta” both legally and politically.

–IANS
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