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  • 1,600 crore scam: Former Coordinator of Assam NRC Prateek Hajela, accused in corruption charges, CBI investigation is going on

    Published on May 21, 2020

    by Bhupen Goswami

    Guwahati: Prateek Hajela, the former convenor of the National Register of Citizens (NRC) in Assam, has been accused of embezzling large amounts of government funds in the process of updating the NRC.Assam Public Works (APW) has filed another case against Wipro Limited (System Integrator) M / S Wipro Limited (System Integrator) and Prateek Hajela in Central Bureau of Investigation CBI. The National Register of Citizens (NRC) was accused of misappropriating huge amounts of public money during the list update. The case was registered on 19 May.As mentioned in the FIR, during the process of NRC updation by Pratik Hajela, former NRC State Coordinator of Assam, M / S Wipro Limited was entrusted as one of the major software installation companies. Another example of alleged irregularities has come to light following the report of the Accountant General of Assam in which false bills showing the purchase of the generator were submitted. Each generator was allegedly purchased for Rs 93,964 / -. Accordingly, an amount of Rs 34.76 crore was released to M / S Wipro Limited for the installation of 3,700 generators. Asam Public Works (APW) has alleged that it is clearly NRC’s former Coordinator Symbol Hazela M / S Wipro Ltd. Indicates to join with, causing heavy losses to the exchequer.An NGO, Assam Public Works (APW), lodged an FIR in the Anti-Corruption Branch and with the CBI, alleging Hazela. Hazela has been accused of embezzling large amounts of government money in updating the list of NRC in the state.APW, the original petitioner in the apex court to update the NRC in Assam under the supervision of the Supreme Court, had filed an FIR requesting a high-level inquiry into the embezzlement of government funds by the former state convenor of NRC and his close aides. The case filed by Abhijit Sarma, the president of the non-governmental body APW, stated that the central government was providing funds for the process of updating NRC through the state The complaint said, “As per the information, about Rs. 1,600 crore has been released and we have requested to investigate the entire process of utilization of the funds because of various irregularities and financial irregularities in the name of various expenses.” A copy of the FIR was also made available to the media. It claimed that Hajela hired several retired government officials as his advisors and they were provided with new vehicles and paid attractive salaries.According to the report of the Indian Express, the NGO cited huge financial irregularities in the functioning of the NRC office under Hazela. The institution has cited several points, including the alleged appointment of Hazela’s advisors and financial disturbances in the purchase of laptops and generators. The NGO says that this is why Hajela did not allow the CAG to audit the amount spent.The complainant NGO said that many school teachers were engaged in the process of updating NRC but they were not paid for it even though records show huge amount of payment under this head. When asked about the complaint against Hazela, Himanta Biswa Sharma, a minister in the Assam government, said that the CAG report is ready regarding the alleged financial irregularities in the NRC process, which will be made public soon.It is to be known that a few months ago, the Supreme Court had issued orders for transfer of 1995 batch Assam-Meghalaya cadre IAS officer Hajela to Madhya Pradesh. He was relieved of work on 12 November 2019. While speaking to media persons, APW President Abhijeet Sharma said that APW had requested the CBI to initiate a case against both M / S Wipro Limited and Prateek Hajela.Meanwhile, according to the CBI report, following this allegation, the CBI has registered a case today and sent a notice against both M / S Wipro Limited and Prateek Hajela.