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‘Maha govt involved in Rs. 106 cr portraits purchase scam’

Nawab-MalikThe NCP accused the BJP-led Maharashtra government of indulging in irregularities worth Rs. 106 crore in the purchase of portraits of national icons to be put up in schools and demanded a judicial probe into the matter.

“In government printing press, portraits of Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj, Jijabai, Dr Babasaheb Ambedkar, Mahatma Phule, Shahu Maharaj are available at just Rs 11,” NCP spokesman Nawab Malik said.

“But the purchases were made by Maharashtra government from the National Co-operative Consumer Federation at Rs 1,395 per portrait. Similarly, books worth Rs 94 crore were purchased from a Gujarat-based company,” he said.

According to him, Education Minister Vinod Tawde has said that he issued the orders based on the directives given by the Union HRD ministry.

“We demand that along with Tawde, HRD Minister Smriti Irani be also brought within the ambit of inquiry,” he added.

Malik said the party has no faith in the ACB because despite complaints, it has not investigated the ‘chikki scam’.

“We want the judicial probe in the fresh case to be instituted under the Commission of Inquiry Act,” he added.

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