BHUBANESWAR: The State Vigilance has started its probe into the ‘money for industry’ controversy involving four MLAs of the ruling BJD by conducting searches at three locations in Balasore and the Capital City.
The sleuths seized CDs and videography equipment which contain the recordings of the sting operation involving an industrialist and the legislators.
The Vigilance will make copies of the materials seized during the searches which comprise three laptops, as many hard disks and five pen drives. The original storage devices will be sent to State Forensic Sciences Laboratory for examination.
Vigilance DG Dr RP Sharma said, “The content aired in a TV channel was truncated and only some parts were shown. The entire recording will be examined and analysis of the conversation done to ascertain whether there is any criminal liability.”
The legislators have also lodged a complaint in Kharavela Nagar police station levelling allegations of blackmailing on the basis of the sting. The anti-corruption wing of the State Government will also probe whether there was any substantial fund transfer to the bank accounts of the persons who executed the sting.
The raids came two days after Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik ordered a Vigilance probe into the matter. A week back, a local news channel had aired separate video footage of four legislators discussing with an unidentified person about no objection certificate and facilitating land acquisition for setting up industries in their respective constituencies.