Himansu Shekhar Rout

Alleging large-scale irregularities in the recently concluded Bali Yatra, the Congress took to the streets in Cuttack on Tuesday. The party workers staged a demonstration in front of the office of the Cuttack Municipal Corporation (CMC) and claimed that a scam worth Rs 8 crore was committed in various project components of the festival.

Shouting slogans against the CMC mayor, Subash Singh, the agitating party workers demanded an impartial investigation into the alleged irregularities in the projects like welcome gates, laser show, AC hangar, fireworks, and advertisements.

Claiming that the CMC Mayor and the Commissioner were involved in the scam, the party workers demanded the resignation of the Mayor.

The protest rally was led by Congress' Barabati-Cuttack MLA, Mohammed Moquim followed by scores of frontline workers and corporators. The party workers warned that they would make house-to-house visits to apprise people of the scam if the CMC fails to order a judicial investigation into the scam. 

Speaking to the media, the lawmaker said, "We demand that the CMC should reveal details of the rates at which tenders for various projects were finalized and the rates at which bills were finalised. People should know about it.”

He also added that the same agencies that were awarded work this year were also allowed to do the work last year. “The CMC is hatching a conspiracy to hide details of expenditure from taxpayers' money for the Bali Yatra projects," Moquim said.
 
Also Read: Bali Yatra controversy: Supplier with 'tainted record' awarded tender despite Works Committee's objection

However, CMC mayor, Subash Singh said, "I will urge Moquim Babu to look at his face in the mirror. Not a single penny was spent or given to anyone in advance. Our internal committee has been formed for this purpose.  Only after the approval of various agencies, the contractors will get their bills cleared. When there is no expenditure, how can a scam happen?”

He also termed the Cuttack-Barabati legislator as the most corrupt leader Cuttack has ever seen in the last 50 years.

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  • DEBASHISH MOHANTY
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