Kejriwal recommends CAG audit of DJB accounts

File sent to Lieutenant-Governor for approval; CM says scrutiny will ‘separate facts from fiction’

Updated - December 07, 2023 01:16 am IST

Published - December 07, 2023 01:15 am IST - New Delhi

 CM Arvind Kejriwal said the delay in the release of funds by the Finance Department may lead to ‘severe’ water crisis.

CM Arvind Kejriwal said the delay in the release of funds by the Finance Department may lead to ‘severe’ water crisis. | Photo Credit: File photo

Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal on Wednesday recommended an audit of Delhi Jal Board (DJB) accounts for the past 15 years by the Comptroller and Auditor General (CAG) of India, saying the misuse of funds cannot be tolerated.

The file concerning the recommendation has been sent to Lieutenant-Governor Vinai Kumar Saxena for approval. The move has come amid funding trouble in the board, resulting in fears of a potential water and sewage crisis in the city.

The BJP has also alleged corruption in the DJB, with party leaders saying the board “has failed” to give an account of the money given to it.

Speaking to reporters, Mr. Kejriwal said the CAG audit would “separate facts from fiction”.

‘Strict action’

“The strictest possible action will be taken against anyone found involved in wrongdoing. This [audit] will put an end to the baseless allegations,” the Chief Minister said.

Mr. Kejriwal also said the Finance Department is not releasing funds needed by the board to maintain the water supply and sewerage, which may lead to a “severe” crisis in Delhi.

“Sewer overflows have started occurring at many places. There are also maintenance issues that need to be addressed. The DJB is not receiving the second instalment of the grant-in-aid [earmarked by the Delhi government in its budget], which is causing all these problems,” he said.

Cabinet Minister Atishi said the Finance Department had raised concerns over “financial mismanagement” without pointing out “specific instances of financial irregularities”.

‘Bid to hide scams’

Meanwhile, Delhi BJP president Virendra Sachdeva said Mr. Kejriwal is trying to hush up “scams”. “It is because of our allegations that Mr. Kejriwal had to issue a clarification on the corruption in the Delhi Jal Board for the first time,” he claimed.

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