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HC for audit of ‘constructed’ check dam
The Madras High Court has directed the Director of Rural Development to conduct an audit of the accounts pertaining to the construction of a check dam in Veerayan Kanmai under the Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment Guarantee Scheme (MGNREGS).
Pointing out the petitioner’s complaint of perceived irregularities in the allotment of public funds to the tune of Rs 4.6 lakh in the construction of the check dam, a division bench presided by Chief Justice Sanjib Banerjee said as only vague and sweeping allegations were made, it may not be necessary to conduct a full-fledged witch-hunt, particularly because the quantum involved was Rs 4.6 lakh.
“That is not to suggest that public money of such value may be squandered, but only to emphasise that the scrutiny, that is necessary upon the petitioner complaining of irregularities, may be conducted at a different level and may not require any monitoring by the court,” the bench held.
The bench directed the Rural Development Director to conduct an audit of the accounts by a certified auditor and place the report before the Sivaganga Collector to enable the official to take or suggest necessary action, if any anomaly was discovered.
The petitioner, T Ravichandran, had sought to identify the Veerayan Kanmai check dam, claiming to have been constructed under MGNREGS in Panangudi village, Kallal Block at a cost of Rs 4.6 lakh.