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Flood relief scam: Bihar governor not averse to CBI probe

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April 27, 2005 14:28 IST

Bihar Governor Buta Singh on Wednesday said he is not averse to a Central Bureau of Investigation probe into the alleged diversion of funds meant for flood relief in the state.

"A state agency is already on the job...let the report come first," he said adding that the state government will order FIRs to be lodged against officials concerned if a case of defalcation or diversion of funds is prima facie made out.

Also see: Flood scam -- Bihar govt to file FIR

Gautam Goswami, a 1992 batch IAS officer, who was named by Time magazine a 'Young Asian Hero' for his exemplary work in providing help to flood victims in Bihar last year, is now in the firing line for allegedly diverting funds meant for flood relief to a private company.

Goswami, the then district magistrate of Patna and nodal officer for coordinating relief for 25 flood-hit districts, paid Rs 17.18 crore to the Bihar Small Scale Industries Corporation, the sole organisation in charge of supplying relief material.

Also see: Ex-Patna DM in trouble, inquiry ordered

Early this month, the BSSIC said it supplied material worth only Rs 22 lakh and has so far been paid Rs 13 lakh.

The rest of the money, documents show, went to an employee of BSSIC, a certain B K Singh.

Singh appears in records as the man raising bills and getting payments from Goswami, BSSIC says it has no employee by that name.

Goswami resigned shortly before the February assembly election in the state and joined the Sahara group.

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