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Cong seeks judicial probe in multi-crore groundnuts scam in Guj

Press Trust of India  |  New Delhi 

The today alleged a Rs 4,000 crore scam in the procurement of groundnuts in Narendra Modi's home state of Gujarat, and demanded a judicial probe into it by a sitting

Addressing a joint press conference here, leaders and alleged that the multi-crore scam had links to the chief minister's office and other higher-ups in the BJP, who were trying to bury it.

Satav said while the had given representations to the to initiate a probe monitored by a judge, it was open to taking legal recourse through a PIL or other measures in case the government did not order a judicial probe.

Dhanani, who is the (CLP) in the Assembly, said the party gave several representations to the state government, which had started investigating the matter and 27 people, including officials, were arrested.

He, however, said the bigwigs and the "real accused" in the scam were getting away.

Dhanani said the scam involved the procurement of groundnuts from farmers. He said the procured groundnuts were sold to millers and the stocks were then adulterated with sand and pebbles to show zero loss.

He added that before the Assembly elections, the government had announced on October 24, 2017, that it would procure groundnuts from farmers at a higher rate of Rs 900 per 20 kg against an earlier rate of Rs 550 after the polls.

"We demand that the order a judicial probe into the groundnuts scam by a sitting judge," they told reporters, alleging that the scam involved Rs 4,000 crores.

"If the government continues to suppress the truth in this case, the path to file a PIL or other legal recourse is open before us," he added.

He alleged that the was seeking to bury the groundnut scam, the threads of the which were linked to the chief minister's office.

Dhanani said the Congress was protesting in every district and outside the godowns where the groundnuts were stored.

The Congress alleged that several BJP leaders were involved in the scam, along with officials of the (NAFED), the State Co-Operative Cotton (GUJCOT), as well as local politicians, who allegedly stole and sold off procured groundnut to

The stocks of groundnut were then adulterated with sand and pebbles to show that there was no loss in weight of the stocks, the party alleged.

The leaders also alleged that there were four incidents of fire at the warehouses where such stocks were kept over the last six months.

(This story has not been edited by Business Standard staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

First Published: Thu, August 09 2018. 23:10 IST