The BJP in Uttarakhand Wednesday termed the suspension of two IAS officers in the multi crore NH-74 compensation scam as the “biggest-ever step” taken by the state government against corruption. The Rs 300 crore scam is related to the alleged conversion of land use with the connivance of officials to pay selected landowners compensation 20 times more than they deserved.
“The party got a massive mandate as people were confident we would hit hard at corruption and we have done that,” state BJP president Ajay Bhatt told reporters here.
“Their suspension in connection with the scam has sent out a positive message that BJP governments do not compromise on corruption and no one found guilty of graft, no matter how strong and big, will be spared,” he said.
Claiming that the BJP had waged a “massive war” against corruption in the country under the leadership of Prime Minister Narendra Modi and BJP president Amit Shah, Bhatt said Chief Minister Trivendra Singh Rawat and the state unit of the party were a partner in the battle.
The SIT probing the scam is doing its job most fairly and many more aspects of the scam are likely to surface in the coming days, he said.
Senior IAS officers Pankaj Kumar Pandey and Chandresh Kumar who had served as District Magistrates of Udham Singh Nagar between 2014 and 2016 were suspended Tuesday on the basis of a report submitted by a Special Investigation Team (SIT) looking into the scam.
The scam pertains to the acquisition of land for the widening of NH-74 in the Udham Singh Nagar district. The two officers have been charged with changing land use in violation of the norms to help chosen landowners get compensation many times more than they deserved.