Thursday 22 Oct 2020

Lokayukta suggests ACB investigation into dustbin 'scam'


PANAJI: Goa Lokayukta has recommended a detailed inquiry by the Anti Corruption Bureau (ACB) of Goa Police into the irregularities in purchase and deployment of excessively high number dustbins under the beach cleaning projector Goa Government. Lokayukta has also asked the ACB to verify whether these dustbins purchased by Drishti Life Savings Pvt Ltd with government money have been returned to the government upon termination of the contract.
In the order, Lokayukta chastised the Tourism Department by terming as “mysterious” the reasons why government allowed the ad hoc arrangement with Drishti Life Savings to continue for more than two and half years even though the work was outsourced to the agency formally only for a period of 106 days from April 1, 2017 to July 16, 2017.
The order was issued in response to a petition filed by one Inacio Pereira from St Cruz in Tiswadi. In his complaint, Pereira raised questions about the unaccounted purchases of dustbins by Drishti Life Savings and highlighted the fact that such bills have been routinely passed without proper scrutiny.
“Prima facie, on the basis of materials on record, such allegations of the complainant appear to be true and it seems that without any specific arrangements and terms and conditions, the government has blindly allowed Drishti to make its purchases of dustbins and claim reimbursement from the government which has been apparently done without proper scrutiny,” the order reads.
Lokayukta has suggested that the matter be investigated by a high-ranking officer of the ACB as its own investigating team is poorly staffed with two constables and head constables each.
While it has not recommended action against any particular public functionary, Lokayukta has laid down that if the ACB, during the course of its investigation, finds the liability or culminability on any individual person, it would be free to take actions in accordance with the law. 

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