In a major development, Yogi government in Uttar Pradesh has recommended a CBI probe into the purchase of land in Mathura for Yamuna Expressway. As per reports, the government has sent a reference to the Ministry of Personnel, Pension and Public Grievance for the same. The scam in purchasing land in Mathura for the said Expressway has reportedly caused a loss of Rs 126 crore to the Yamuna Expressway Industrial Development Authority (YEIDA). One of the accused in the scam is former YEIDA Chief Executive Officer, retired IAS officer PC Gupta. A departmental inquiry had been conducted recently by the authority and PC Gupta was found guilty. On the basis of this inquiry, FIR was registered against Gupta and 20 others for acquiring 57 hectares of land in the YEIDA area in Mathura at an artificially inflated price from their relatives and acquaintances causing huge loss to the authority. Gupta continued to be on the run even after the filing of FIR. Now, he has been in jail for the last one month.
On the basis of the report into this scam, the Uttar Pradesh government has recommended a CBI probe into this matter. The officials have discovered that Gupta had purchased land in seven villages in Mathura at the cost of Rs 85.49 crore and thereafter sold it at a much higher price to YEIDA causing a loss to the authority to the tune of Rs. 126 crores. The Greater Noida police has added three more names of former and current bureaucrats in the FIR lodged against the 22 accused.
As per reports, it is difficult to say that more names could come up during CBI investigations and whether former chief minister Mayawati could also be implicated under whose tenure this project was sanctioned. The Yamuna Expressway project had been in the midst of a controversy following a large scale protest by farmers against the land acquisition policy that had been pursued by the state government for the Expressway. And now, irregularities are appearing on the face of it suggesting that all was not fair in the construction of the Yamuna Expressway.
Mayawati who is already on the verge of extinction with zero MPs being sent to the Parliament by BSP and boasting of merely 19 MLAs in the Uttar Pradesh legislative assembly might just receive the shock of her life if greater details are divulged into misappropriation of the Yamuna Expressway project which had been marketed and advertised by the Mayawati government fervently. This is going to expose how the tax money was plundered by purchasing land for the project at a highly exorbitant cost. Mayawati is already weakening down in stature in the state of Uttar Pradesh. Her skill of engineering a social coalition is now being doubted and seen as a thing of the past. She has not only lost the touch of winning over other caste groups but her principal vote bank has also deserted her, as a reason of which even the chances of her survival looks grim leave alone the question of a revival. In such circumstances, graft allegations is the last thing she would have wanted. Even if her active involvement does not come up during the CBI probe, questions will be asked about how such open loot could occur right under her nose. Mayawati is set to suffer another telling blow in the run up to the 2019 elections.
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