Gujarat Congress leader accuses Smriti Irani of misappropriating funds allotted to her under MPLAD scheme

Gandhinagar: Gujarat Congress president Amit Chavda has accused Union Textiles minister Smriti Irani of “misappropriating” funds allotted to her under the Members of Parliament Local Area Development (MPLAD) scheme.

In a series of social media messages, Gujarat Congress President Amit Chavda has claimed that Smriti Irani, who is a Rajya Sabha member from Gujarat, had committed financial irregularities in spending funds in her adopted Maghrol village of Anand district under the Sansad Adarsh Gram Yojana. “Smriti Irani adopted Maghrol in Anand district to make it a ‘model village.’ But instead, she made it a model of corruption and blatant misuse of power – She misappropriated funds received under her MPLAD scheme.”

Chavda alleged that Irani illegally used her MPLAD fund in violation of the guidelines for their use, her staff coercing officials into awarding contracts to a particular entity – Sharda Majoor Kamdar Sahkari Mandli. Chavda terms it a “proxy” for the minister. Chavda claimed that the allocation of contract to this particular cooperative was in violation of the prescribed norms, as a contract of more than Rs 50 lakh cannot be awarded to a particular group under the MPLAD scheme.

“This cooperative got work contracts worth many times above the prescribed limit. During an inspection in June 2017, it was revealed that work was not up to the mark and there were discrepancies in the estimates and the actual cost. Besides, in many cases projects were never completed, but full money was paid to this cooperative,’’ it is pointed out.


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