Wednesday, 19 April , 2006, 19:50
Bhopal: Alleging corruption in rehabilitation of Sardar Sarovar Project (SSP) oustees, Narmada Bachao Andolan (NBA) on Wednesday launched a campaign to expose “irregularities” and threatened criminal proceedings against Madhya Pradesh government officials and Chief Minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan.
“Anyone among us will initiate criminal proceedings against state government officials and Chouhan for large-scale corruption in rehabilitation work,” NBA leader Medha Patkar told reporters, while staging a four-hour demonstration in front of the Chief Minister’s house in Bhopal to begin the “pol khol campaign” (expose misdeed campaign).
Alleging that Chouhan was “afraid” of facing protesting dam oustees, she claimed that by issuing a special package to oustees for cash compensation for their land, the state government stood in stark violation of the decision of Narmada Dispute Redressal Tribunal, which made it mandatory for compensating land falling under submergence, with fertile land.
Under the “pol khol” campaign, the NBA activists will expose bureaucrats and politicians who were allegedly effecting corruption in rehabilitation process, she claimed.
Asked about allegations of corruption levelled by Patkar, Chouhan later told reporters that his government was yet to receive a formal complaint in this regard.
“If any specific complaint is lodged by anyone, whether Medha Patkar or anyone else, it will be probed and strict action taken,” the Chief Minister added.