GUWAHATI, Sept 24 � Accusing the State government of lacking the will to put in place a permanent flood-control mechanism, AGP leader and former Chief Minister Prafulla Kumar Mahanta today said that the government was only promoting its vested interests by wasting huge amounts of money in the name of flood control.
Mahanta also called for a CBI inquiry into the �large-scale corruption� in the Water Resources Department besides the �nexus of the GMC and GMDA with big business groups� in the matter of land encroachment on wetlands in Guwahati.
�Floods have been a perennial bane of Assam but the government is reluctant to bring a permanent solution to the menace. As observed in the CCO-based audit report of the Water Resource Department, the government is unwilling to find out a permanent solution to the problem. Rather, a huge sum of money worth crores of rupees have been spent in the name of flood control by the department and that too, without proper planning,� Mahanta said at a press conference.
Pointing out that the CCO-based audit had categorically mentioned deep-rooted corruption in the Water Resource Department and that huge amounts of money had been misutilized during 2006 to 2011, Mahanta demanded a CBI inquiry into the anomalies, besides immediately blacklisting of the contractors/companies that were engaged by the department, and also bringing to book the officials and ministers responsible.
On State capital Guwahati�s worsening urban floods, Mahanta said that the government and the administration had been carrying selective eviction drives targeting mostly the poor and leaving out the influential sections, especially the industrialists and companies who, too, were encroaching prime wetlands.
�It is really surprising that despite the admission by the Deputy Commissioner, Angamathu, that 45 buildings were constructed illegally, those are yet to be demolished by the authorities. Such inaction lays bare the unholy nexus between the government and its agencies with those who have illegally constructed these buildings,� he added.