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UDF approaches CAG over scams in Kozhikode Corporation

Council party alleges political interference in the transfer of investigating officer in the building number scam

January 24, 2023 11:45 pm | Updated January 26, 2023 10:19 am IST - Kozhikode

The United Democratic Front (UDF) council party of the Kozhikode Corporation has forwarded a complaint to the Comptroller and Auditor General (CAG) regarding the alleged financial frauds in the civic body over the past one year.

The development comes against the backdrop of the recent finding of the Local Fund Audit department that the Corporation had 13 bank accounts, the details of which were not shown in the Annual Finance Statement (AFS). The Audit department had held an investigation following embezzlement from the Corporation’s accounts in the Punjab National Bank.

In the complaint to the CAG, UDF council party leader K.C. Shobhita and Deputy Leader K. Moideen Koya alleged that the Corporation had neglected the various objections cited by the Audit department and expressed suspicion on the budget and forecast made by the Corporation on the basis of the AFS. The complaint also highlighted the lack of proper asset register or stock register in the Corporation based on the Local fund Audit Report of 2020-21. The UDF alleged that demand registers of revenue items like property tax, rent, permit fees, and trade license fees were also not being maintained.

The UDF council party also alleged political interference in investigations into the building number scam and other irregularities, besides misappropriation and manipulation of data. “It is suspicious that the officer probing the building number scam has been transferred for the second time when the investigation was in progress,” Ms. Shobhita said.

Meanwhile, the Corporation had clarified that the Kudumbashree accounts were never included in the AFS, and that it was not a fault on the part of the civic body. The Corporation maintained that the practice was followed throughout the State, and that the civic body prepared to change it if the State government ordered so.

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