CAG points out corruption in Delhi, Kejriwal government calls for CBI probe
The Comptroller and Auditor General (CAG) has flagged a slew of irregularities in the financial administration of the national capital, prompting the Delhi government to say on Tuesday that a federal investigation will be sought in at least 50 instances of government resources being swindled.
Some of the important findings of the CAG, tabled by deputy chief minister Manish Sisodia in the Assembly on Tuesday, included untracked funds amounting to Rs 7,270 crore and instances where ration shop owners cornered subsidised grains meant for the poor.
“No one will be spared,” said chief minister Arvind Kejriwal, promising “exemplary action”. The government said it would send at least 50 cases pointed out by the CAG to the Union government for an investigation by the Central Bureau of Investigation.
In addition to financial irregularities, the CAG also highlighted cases of administrative oversight and inaction that resulted in delayed projects and inefficient operations.
According to the report, the government till March 31 last year failed to collect 3,105 utilisation certificates for Rs 7,269.69 crore released in grants. Of the total amount, 64% (amounting to Rs 4,939 crore) was outstanding for two to 10 years.
The auditor found corruption in the government’s public distribution system where it said that 792 ration shop licence-holders were enjoying subsidised foodgrains that could have otherwise been given to the poor. Delhi’s quota of ration card holders has been full and no new beneficiaries are being added.
Kejriwal said his government was trying to control the “ration mafia” and blamed the Lieutenant Governor for stalling a scheme to start doorstep delivery of subsidised foodgrain. Last month, the L-G returned the file asking the government to re-work the scheme and consider cash transfer of subsidies.
“The entire ration system is in the grip of mafia protected by political masters. Doorstep delivery would have destroyed this mafia,” the CM said. The L-G’s office did not respond to requests for a comment.
Opposition leader Vijender Gupta criticised the government and said it was not serious about its budget estimates and expenditures.“All excess expenditures made by the government are going unaccounted as the Kejriwal government has been unable to hold even a single meeting of the Public Accounts Committee,” he said.