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Kerala: Charges against CMD: FACT files go missing

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Charges against CMD: FACT files go missing


KOCHI: Some of the files regarding the cost of renovating the bungalow of Jaiveer Srivastava, the chairman and managing director (CMD) of Fertilizers and Chemicals Travancore Ltd (FACT), are not traceable, states a reply from FACT following an RTI query. The reply assumes significance as Srivastava is currently facing allegations of fund misappropriation.



The company secretary's reply to the RTI query states that expenditure details of only Rs 64 lakh is available with the company. Files regarding further expenditure could not be traced, said the company secretary who is also the information officer.



Following allegations that the CMD had spent around Rs 1. 5 crore for renovating his official residence, the CBI has been probing the matter. "Some renovation/repair was made on the quarters of CMD recently and the total expenditure incurred is Rs 64.63 lakh. It may please be noted that the details of previous repair and maintenance done to the official quarters of the CMD is not traceable from the records available with the company," the reply by company secretary K V Balakrishnan stated. After receiving the RTI reply, K Premnath, president of VOICE, an NGO based in Kochi, submitted an application to the appellate authority challenging the reply. "Director (finance) of FACT, who is the appellate authority, gave me the same reply. In his reply, he also informed that I can inspect the files. I will inspect the files soon," Premnath said.



"Our organization fights corruption. It was following allegations that the CMD had spent a huge amount on renovating his official residence that we filed the RTI application," he said. "Last year, the central information commissioner had ordered that officials concerned should be held responsible if files in his or her custody go missing," he said.



When TOI contacted Balakrishnan over phone, he said that he had forwarded the reply received from officials of the concerned departments. "I don't remember the exact reply I gave. Whatever reply I gave, it must have been what I received from the heads of departments concerned," Balakrishnan said.



As per the RTI reply, 97 LED bulbs were bought for the living room at a cost of Rs 1.64 lakh. Another 120 LED bulbs were bought for the remaining rooms. For the kitchen furniture alone, Rs 4,68,466 was spent. The amount excluded home appliances.



Last week, CBI inspected the offices of various top officials of FACT. They were also questioned.



The CBI first raided the office of CMD on December 21 last year while conducting investigations into an alleged misappropriation of funds.



It was alleged that the CMD had spent Rs 1.5 crore for renovating his official residence and another Rs 50 lakh for renovating the office.



CBI officials had also said there were nine major charges against Srivastava. Srivastava, however, has denied the charges.


Read More: Charges against CMD: FACT files go missing - The Times of India

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If the CMD has spent Rs.1.5 Cr for renovation of official bungalow, it is not only misappropriation of funds, but it is also corruption. Rs.150 lakhs is not a small amount. It is possible to construct 2 posh bungalows with this amount (without land cost).


It is also false and misleading contention that the file is missing.


[1] When the detailed estimate is sanctioned, a copy of which is filed on record of Finance (Expenditure) branch.


[2] The tender schedule and document may have another copy of detailed estimate.


[3] The accepted tender, based on which the work of renovation is executed and payment made shall be form part of the contract agreement and must be available on separate record.


[4] The Running Bills as well as Final Bill of the work of renovation shall be another document which contain the itemwise quantity executed and amount paid and shall indicate the total cost and payments made.


[5] The Measurement Book with respect to the renovation works, wherein the measurements of quantities are recorded is another permanent record where all the details and expenditure shall be available.


[6] The Civil Engineer or the Technical branch, which executed the works may have another copy of the entire set of documents - including the Sanctioned Estimate, Schedule of Work, Letter of Acceptance, Running Account Bills, Final Bill and Measurement Book.


[7] As per CVC directives, the concluded tender was required to be uploaded in their website being a PSU, and if done, it shall show more details.


The RTI Applicant in this case should file fresh RTI Application and seek certified copies of these documents.

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