A former IAS officer alleged that a massive ‘online lottery scam’ took place eight years back and held then Finance Minister Jayant Patil of NCP and senior IAS officer Kavita Gupta responsible.
“The multi-crore scam was perpetrated with connivance of Patil and Gupta, who was then in the Finance department and served as Director, Lotteries,” alleged Anand Kulkarni, who retired this year as the Maharashtra Additional Chief Secretary.
A 15-page confidential report on lottery operations was “suppressed” during the Congress-NCP regime, he alleged.
“The report exposed gross violation of Central guidelines, and a nexus between the Finance department and private lottery operators”, he claimed.
Kulkarni has written to the BJP-led Maharashtra government demanding an investigation by the Anti-Corruption Bureau (ABC) into lottery operations between 2001 and 2008.
“Private operator Martin Lottery Agencies controlled the Maharashtra State Lottery operations from Chennai and the State Lottery Board, whose chairman is the Finance Minister, considered Martin’s lone tender and gave repeated extensions,” he said.
Then Home Minister R R Patil in 2007 ordered a CID probe headed by the then Additional Director General of Police S P S Yadav into the lottery scam, he said.
The Yadav panel found a nexus between the Ministry of Finance and the private lottery company and mooted immediate closure of online lottery in the state, he added.
Both Patil and Gupta were unable for comments.