KARNATAKA

Probe sought into `graft' in Bellary Corporation

BELLARY, NOV. 29. The Bellary District Congress Committee today alleged that corruption was rampant in the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP)-controlled Bellary City Municipal Corporation Council, and urged the Chief Minister to send a team to conduct an inquiry.

A press release issued here by K.C. Kondaiah on behalf of the committee alleged that the council had violated norms while inviting tenders and awarding contract for various works.

Many works were of poor quality.

The Lokayukta, who visited the corporation office some time ago, found many discrepancies in the purchases made by the council.

He had also found violation of norms for changing "khatas" and detected irregularities while clearing bills.

The Lokayukta had directed the Deputy Commissioner to ask the Assistant Commissioner to look into the irregularities in the corporation, Mr. Kondaiah said. Mr. Kondaiah ridiculed the claim of the BJP that it would ensure cleanliness and beautify the city.

Kondaiah blamed

Meanwhile, reacting to the criticism by Mr. Kondaiah, the BJP leaders held him responsible for "illegal" mining in the district.

Addressing presspersons here today, G. Janardhan Reddy, President of the district unit of the BJP, accused Mr. Kondaiah of encouraging "illegal" mining in the district.

Stating that he had evidence to substantiate their charge, Mr. Reddy accused Mr. Kondaiah of preventing some companies from mining in areas allotted to them in order to help those close to him.

On Mr. Kondaiah's appeal to the Chief Minister to send a team to conduct an inquiry into the affairs in the corporation office here, Mr. Reddy said that his party was ready to face it.

The team should also look into the "activities" of Mr. Kondaiah, he added.

The Mayor, Somashekar Reddy, was present.

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