Bhubaneswar, Jan 25( Odisha.in) Drawing curtain on the speculations about the minister who had accepted bribe of Rs 5 lakhs throuh an agent from a supplier, the Wold Bank team on Thursday have revealed the name of former health minister which has raised suspecion about the role of the WB members.
State Chief Secretary Ajit Kumar Tripathy said the Bank officials who visited the State during the day informed that it was former Health Minister Bijoyshree Routray who allegedly accepted a sum of Rs five lakh from an agent in July 2005 as bribe.
The agent in question had told the Bank in December 2005 about acceptance of the illegal gratification by the then Minister, Tripathy told mediapersons.
Such statement raises suspecion about the role of the WB officials, as to why they had not named the corrupt minister for past over three years, though the agent had revealed them the name. Moreover in the DIR, in its report has categorically mentioned,
The DIR reviewed the OHSDP because, during the Department of InstitutionalIntegrity’s (INT) investigation into the Bank’s Reproductive and Child Health Project,a firm admitted paying INR 500,000 (USD 11,000) to the Orissa State Minister of Health and other ministry officials to facilitate the payment of INR 2.5 million (USD 55,500) in non-Bank-funded invoices.
In addition, the Bank had received four complaints alleging collusion and corrupt practices by OHSDP bidders and PSA officials.
144 Including the OHSDP in the DIR also brought a state-specific project within the DIR’s scope; this is significant because state-specific projects are an increasingly significant feature of the Bank’s lending to India and its health sector.
Pursuant to its risk-driven methodology, the DIR selected areas to review based on an analysis of the project’s fiduciary and development risks.
By focusing on high-risk areas, the DIR maximized its ability to identify indicators of fraudulentor corrupt schemes that could significantly affect the project’s outcomes.
Strangely, though the WB representatives have disclosed the name of Minister Bijoyshree Routray, they have not divulged the names of ” other ministry officials” and the name of the agent through whom money was paid to Routray. Moreover they are also silent about the name of the supplier who had paid the bribe most probably to push through its substandard products.
Moreover, the WB team which met and discussed with Chief Secretary Ajit Tripathy and made such sensitive exposures did not include any of the members of the five-member Evaluation Team which had prepared th DIR .
Neither Sachi Satoathy, nor Paul or Thomas McCarthy, Jr. The World Bank Group Department of Institutional Integrity were included in the team for ” mysteruous ” reasons.
In the meanwhile Sachi Satpathy, a member of the World Bank Evaluation Team ,who had shown the courrage of making the WB’s DIR public in a communcation has said.
“Orissa politics has sinked into a nadir of moral bankruptcy with the naming of dissident BJD leader Bijayshree Routray as the culprit in the Rs 400 Crore OHSDP scam. It is a classic case of stage manged covering up of corruption at any cost by the Orissa government.
The pro activeness of World Bank and Chief Secretary( announcing a political decision) in naming Bijayshree Routray has even put question mark over the credibility of chief minister Patnaik and his Government.
Now the need of the hour for the Hon’ble CM Naveen Patnaik to put down his feet in punishing the real culprit instead of diverting the issue by naming the political dissident as scapegoat.
The issue is not only five lakhs but loot of 400 crores. I am in touch with my INT team over this matter and express my unhappiness in WB coming over to Bhubaneswar and handing over somebody’s name. If situations don’t come in the expected line, then I will be forced to go to public in days to come. “
This communication of Satpathy has virtually thrown a challenge to the motive of the WB team as well as that of the Orissa Government.
If the Chief Secretary could disclose the name of Bijoyshree Routray, who has fallen from the grace of Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik, what has prevented him to disclose the names of the officials who had also sought bribe to pass the bill ?
Talking to Odisha.in a senior advocate of Orissa High Court said, instead of simply disclosing the name of Bijoyshree Routray, the State Government should take action against him and the officials under Prevention of Corruption Act.
If Routray is not involved in taking bribe, he should waste no time in challenging the version of the Chief Secretary and the WB by filing both criminal and civil defamation cases against them to prove his innocence and integrety.