PATNA: Around Rs 13.50 crore of government money meant for construction of toilets in Bihar was allegedly transferred to four NGOs by an engineer of the PHed department against whom an FIR has been filed.
Government money was allegedly transferred by Public Health and Engineering Department (PHED) then Executive Engineer Vinay Kumar Sinha to four NGOs and some individuals for the construction of toilets in May 2016 when the work of toilet construction was taken from PHED and given to Rural Development Department, officials said.
The money was to be transferred directly to the beneficiaries as there was no role for NGOs in the construction of toilets, Patna District Magistrate Sanjay Kumar Agarwal told PTI.
There are no records to ascertain as whether or not money actually went to the beneficiaries' accounts, he added.
The funds were meant to construct toilets under a state government scheme during 2012-13, 2013-14 and 2014-15.
"About a month ago, I had a doubt while reviewing the matter that there is something fishy. I got the matter probed in which it was found that money has been transferred to the accounts of three NGOs," Agarwal said.
Following the detection of misappropriation of funds of Rs 13.5 crore, he said that "an FIR has been lodged against PHED Executive Engineer Vinay Kumar Sinha, his department's accountant, NGOs and some individuals." Sinha, who is currently posted as the Superintending Engineer at Bihar Rajya Jal Parishad, Patna, did not have power to release funds above Rs 5 lakh but he transferred around Rs 11.50 crore to NGOs within a span of 10-15 days in May 2016 through cheques each valuing less than Rs 5 lakh, the DM said.
The district magistrate said Sinha had also allegedly transferred around Rs 2 crore to the NGOs for creating mass awareness.
Certificate cases will be filed against Sinha and other employees involved in the misappropriation of funds for recovery of the government money, Agarwal said adding that steps are being taken to seize properties of NGOs indulged in the financial irregularities.
Official sources said that a sum of Rs 10 crore was allegedly transferred to Adishakti Seva Sansthan, Rs 2.14 crore to Maa Sarveshwari Seva Sansthan, Rs 1.52 crore to Satyam Shivam Kala Kendra and Rs 6.71 lakh to Shiv Seva Sanstha besides smaller amounts were also paid to two individuals. PTI AR RG .
This is unedited, unformatted feed from the Press Trust of India wire.