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Rural jobs scheme funds misused in Uttar Pradesh: Congress

Lucknow, March 9 (IANS) The Congress Tuesday alleged large-scale corruption and irregularities in the National Rural Employment Guarantee Scheme (NREGS) in Uttar Pradesh, and announced a series of agitations against the ‘corrupt’ Mayawati regime.

‘We have got a report prepared by one of our activists who has gathered sufficient evidence to establish how officials of the Mayawati administration have indulged in blatant misuse of NREGS funds,’ Congress general secretary and state in-charge Digvijay Singh told media persons.

‘It was shocking to find that NREGS funds were used to purchase toys, almirahs and even calendars in parts of Uttar Pradesh,’ he said.

He alleged corruption was so widespread under the Mayawati regime that this was just a tip of the iceberg.

‘That is why the Congress party proposes to organise state wide demonstrations and rallies so that people could be told about the extent of pilferage and bungling of funds allocated towards the development or towards the well being of the people of the state,’ Singh said.

The first round of rallies and demonstrations would be launched from April 14, the birth anniversary of Babasaheb Bhimrao Ambedkar, the ruling Bahujan Samaj Party’s (BSP) key icon.

‘And what was worse that even after such pilferage was brought to light, the punishment awarded to the guilty officials was just an eyewash as most of them were reinstated shortly after a brief suspension,’ he claimed, seeking their dismissal from service and recovery of the misused funds.

On the denial of compensation to the victims of last week’s stampede in a village in Pratapgarh district, he said: ‘While Mayawati remained soft towards her officials guilty of large scale pilferage and even as she was busy spending thousands of crores on her construction projects, she claimed her government was short of funds to be given to the victims.’

Flaying Mayawati for ‘not even caring to visit the families of stampede victims’, Singh praised Congress leader Rahul Gandhi for ‘making it a point to fly down all the way from Delhi to not only meet the victims’ families but also insuring a handsome monetary relief for them out of the central government’s kitty’.

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