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Nagaland Lokayukta conducts hearing on NPF’s allegations against Govt


Dimapur, December 5: The Nagaland Lokayukta today heard the notice in the Preliminary Inquiry No. A-NLP-9/2019 registered Suo Moto under Section 11, 8(1) and 14 of the Nagaland Lokayukta Act 2017. All notice except Chief Secretary to the Government of Nagaland were present.
According to an Order issued by Nagaland Lokayukta, Justice Uma Nath Singh, Spokesperson of NPF, Achumbemo Kikon has filed written statement with some documents pointing out certain grievances which need to be inquired by the Nagaland Lokayukta Police Establishment.
Kikon pointed out that the amount so far released for the construction of Medical College Kohima is 100 plus crore. However, work executed till date is much below the sanctioned amount.
He also stated that the sanctioned amount for the Kohima city road, by-pass check gate to Phesame check gate is more than 150 crore. However, the execution is not according to the expectation of the amount sanctioned.
Kikon further pointed that the sanctioned amount for Dimapur 4 lane road-Purana Bazaar to Chumu-Patkai Bridge point is more than 200 crore, but execution of the work is not upto the mark.
He also said that the fund meant for Kohima Smart city has not been utilized properly as per the DPF prepared. The amount release for Kohima Smart City is so far more than 100 crore, he stated.
Kikon also stated that since the documents relating to the allegations are within the knowledge and possession of the state Government, the opposition party is not in a position to furnish the same in support of the allegations.
He further stated that if the Nagaland Lokayukta insists on strict compliance with procedures by requiring Affidavits, the people of Nagaland may not come forward to lodge complaints in respect of matters of public interest.
As the chief secretary of the state was not present to give his views, the version of state government was not available for assistance.
During the course of the hearing, it was also brought to the notice of the court that the grievance relating to the 4 laning road from Dimapur to Kohima (Patkai Bridge to Jotsoma Bypass) relates to NHIDC, a central agency. However, as the fund released by the Central Government in respect thereof is for the construction of road in the state of Nagaland, mainly for the benefits and welfare of the people of Nagaland, it may not be proper to seek a response from the agency on delay as well as escalation of costs in completing the project.
It was also informed that inside the city of Dimapur, which is also the commercial capital of Nagaland, construction and maintenance of roads as also the civic facilities are in a very pathetic condition and thus also need to be closely monitored by this organization.
The Nagaland Lokayukta, therefore, issued notice to Dimapur Municipal Council and PWD (R&B) to file their Affidavits, particularly in the light of written statement and documents filed by the Naga People’s Front.
The Lokayukta also directed that in respect of issues raised in written statement of the complainant, NPF, the Nagaland Lokayukta Police Establishment would register separate Preliminary inquiry cases in order to complete the inquiry at the earliest. The PE, No. A-NLP-9/2019 would now be confined to the issue of 4 lanning of road from Dimapur to Kohima.
The Lokayukta asked the Preliminary Inquiry Reports to be submitted on or before February 19, 2020. He also asked Chief Secretary to the Government of Nagaland and Nagaland Page to file attested affidavits before the next day of hearing.
Earlier, Advocate Yimjungpenla Abigail Longkumer appearing for Nagaland Page stated that since complete copy of the order was not made available, the Affidavit could not be completed and sworn in time. All other newspapers had filed duly attested affidavits.
He also said appearance of Editors, Proprietors/Publishers of Newspapers and Authors of the news items is dispensed with until further order(s). However, they shall appear before Inquiry Officers as and when so needed in connection with Preliminary Inquiry.
The next hearing has been fixed on February 19, 2020 at 12 noon in Dimapur Police Officers’ Mess. (Page News Service)