Recover Rs 854 crore from AAP over ad spends, says Cong | delhi | Hindustan Times
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Recover Rs 854 crore from AAP over ad spends, says Cong

delhi Updated: Sep 17, 2016 21:52 IST
HT Correspondent
HT Correspondent
Hindustan Times
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Chief minister Arvind Kejriwal and his administration should be probed by the CBI or any other agency for “criminality” in the matter, AICC senior spokesman and Delhi PCC chief Ajay Maken told reporters. (Virendra Singh Gosain/HT PHOTO)

The Congress on Saturday demanded recovery of nearly R 854 crore from the ruling Aam Aadmi Party for publishing advertisements on self-promotion.

A central committee had on Friday said the Kejriwal government splurged exchequer’s money on advertisements and violated Supreme Court guidelines.

Chief minister Arvind Kejriwal and his administration should be probed by the CBI or any other agency for “criminality” in the matter, AICC senior spokesman and Delhi PCC chief Ajay Maken told reporters.

Maken said Lieutenant-Governor Najeeb Jung should ensure recovery of the advertisement cost at commercial rates -- this is thrice what the DAVP (Directorate of Advertising and Visual Publicity) charges -- as they were issued to promote the ruling AAP and its leaders.

Read: AAP questions ‘neutrality’ of Centre’s advertisement committee

He said the AAP government spent R284.67 crore on advertisements published outside Delhi.

“Had the AAP issued these advertisements at non-DAVP rates, three times more, the cost would have been more than R850 crore. As per the order of the committee, AAP is liable to reimburse the Delhi government a sum of more than R854 crore,” he said.

The Centre-appointed committee headed by former chief election commissioner B B Tandon on Friday said the AAP government had splurged public funds on advertisements to promote chief minister Arvind Kejriwal and his party in violation of the Supreme Court guidelines and asked the ruling party to reimburse the money.

The three-member committee had been constituted by the I&B ministry on directions of the Supreme Court to address issues related to content regulation in government advertising.

In its order, the panel said that AAP should be made to reimburse the expenditure since it had violated the Supreme Court order of May 13, 2015.

Read: Central panel says AAP govt should refund ad spend