Thiruvananthapuram: The Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) has registered a case into the alleged scam in Life Mission project. Anti-corruption unit at Kochi has registered a case under Foreign Contribution (Regulation) Act. However, no one has been named accused in the case.
Prima facie, the case pertains to spending the foreign fund against the purpose for which it was aimed. The FIR has been submitted at a special court here. CBI has also pointed out the need for further probe into the issue.
The CBI also conducted searches at two locations in Kochi on Friday after registering case.
The CBI has booked Santhosh Eapan of Unitac Builders, which bagged the contract of the project, and carried out searches at his office and residence in Kochi.
Congress MLA Anil Akkara had filed a complaint with CBI alleging fraudulence in Life Mission project. It was said in the plaint that the contracts of the project including that with UAE-based Red Crescent were illegal.
The FCRA violation and corruption in the project has snowballed into a big political issue in Kerala with Leader of Opposition in the Assembly Ramesh Chennithala alleging that Swapna Suresh, a key accused in the gold smuggling case, had admitted before an NIA court that she had received Rs 1 crore as commission from the project.
The opposition has alleged that there was corruption involved in the selection of the contractor by Red Crescent.
Red Crescent, an international humanitarian movement, had agreed to provide Rs 20 crore funds towards the Life Mission project.
Chennithala said the chief minister has failed to hand over a copy of the MoU signed between the Red Crescent and the state government.
He alleged that the commission involved in the case amounts to nearly Rs 9 crore.
The state government, the other day, had announced Vigilance probe into the Life Mission project. However, Opposition had slammed the decision and demanded CBI probe.
(With inputs from PTI)