THE STATE Government on Monday suspended managing director of Uttar Pradesh Forest Corporation J S Asthana on charges of grave financial irregularities in the sale of tendu leaves.
Principal secretary (Forests) V N Garg said Asthana had been charged with lapses on selling 30 lots below the floor rate (cut off rate) in the first auction.
Price of tendu leaves were fixed at Rs 30 per kg, but it was found that the leaves were sold at a much lesser price than the floor rate causing heavy losses to the forest corporation. The rate for tendu leaves was quoted by the Uttar Pradesh Forest Department.
Total 30 lots, each lot comprising 60 to 70 bags, had been sold below the floor rate and. Each bag had about 30 kgs of leaves. “This was one of the charges, apart from other administrative lapses,” said the principal secretary.
A vigilance inquiry has been constituted against Asthana and for the time being he has been attached with the office of principal chief conservator of forests (PCCF). R P Tiwari has taken over as the new MD of the UP Forest Corporation.