Court moved over CBI probe into Orissa pulses scam

The Orissa High Court was Thursday moved by a petitioner seeking a CBI probe into an alleged multi-crore rupee scam involving supply of poor quality pulses under government welfare schemes. A team of the opposition Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) also plans to inquire into the allegations.

Petitioner Dilip Mohapatra said he filed the petition because he had no faith in the state’s investigating agencies and wanted “an investigation by the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI)”.

The alleged scam, related to supplying poor quality pulses to women and children beneficiaries of government welfare schemes, came to light after the vigilance department last month confirmed there were irregularities at several places.

Although several days have passed, the vigilance department has not initiated action against anybody yet. As a result people involved in the scam have got the chance to destroy evidence, Mohapatra said.

The state government supplies pulses under the mid-day meal scheme, the integrated child development scheme and the supplementary nutrition programme.

The pulses were cooked and distributed among women and children across the state along with other food items with the aim of providing them supplementary nutrition.

Meanwhile, a central team of the BJP headed by national secretary Kirit Somaiya is expected to visit the state next week to make an on-the-spot assessment of the irregularities in the supply of poor quality pulses.

State BJP president Jual Oram said Somaiya will visit several districts Feb 7-8. Leaders of the state unit will also accompany him, he told here.