BJP legislator in trouble over misuse of funds

Gandhinagar, Feb 18 (Calcutta Tube) Gujarat High Court has directed Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) legislator Shankar Chaudhary to file an affidavit before March 4 regarding allegations that he misused Rs.60 lakh of government relief money.

Similar directions have also been given to the state government as well.

The directions came from a division bench Wednesday headed by Chief Justice S.J. Mukhopadhyay on a PIL filed by a social worker, F. Goklani who petitioned that the legislator from Radhanpur had obtained a grant of Rs.60.95 lakh from the Prime Minister’s National Relief Fund (PMNRF) and misused the amount.

The money was secured for repairing Nalanda girl’s school building damaged during the 2001 earthquake.

Chaudhary’s trust – Swami Vivekananda Vikas Mandal – runs the school but in a building owned by a different trust, Sarvodaya Arogya Nidhi. This charitable trust did not apply for money from the PMNRF for repair of its building.

The PIL alleged that Chaudhary diverted the money taken from PMNRF to his own trust and then bought land and constructed a building which now houses the Nalanda school.

The high court has now directed both Chaudhary and the state government to clarify on the ownership of the building for which the grant from PMNRF was taken.

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