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Another scam hits Assam government
Published on 10 Mar. 2010 12:16 AM IST
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Right after the Rs 1,000 crore scandal of North Cachar Hill Autonomous Council, another scam involving a tribal council hit the Assam Government today. The scam surfaced when police seized Rs 60 lakh from possession of Gargaram Pegu, Principal Secretary to the Mishing Autonomous Council, near Mangaldoi previous night. He was later arrested and the interrogation was on as Pegu could not give satisfactory reply about the source of the money but reportedly told police that it was meant for ‘Dispur’. Assam Forest Minister Rakibul Hussain informed that entire interrogation reports would be tabled in the Assembly. This morning Leader of Opposition Chandra Mohan Patowary raised the matter while independent MLA Bhuban Chandra Pegu alleged that Assam Tribal Affairs Minister Prameela Rani Brahma was trying to shield the corrupt official. Brahma announced an inquiry by the commissioner of Northern Assam into the whole episode but that did not satisfy the opposition which alleged that an official level inquiry would not bring out the truth. According to UNI report, the Opposition alleged that money was a part of a larger booty collected from the contractors of the Mishing Autonomous Council for payment to the ‘ministers and officials’ of the Assam Government. They demanded a statement from Ms Brahma and later staged a noisy walkout. ‘’I was not involved in the whole episode and some of the officers might have done something wrong,’’ Ms Brahma said in her defence. Later a joint press conference was addressed by the entire Opposition demanding immediate resignation of Ms Brahma besides a high level inquiry. The government had already ordered a CBI inquiry into the Rs 1000 crore scandal of the North Cachar hills where businessmen and bureaucrats along with politicians siphoned off large amount of development fund between 2004-2009. The matter had already been probed by the National Invetsigation Agency (NIA) which recommended for a CBI probe.

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