APW Files FIR Levelling Multi-Crore Corruption Charges Against Prateek Hajela, Wipro
GUWAHATI: Assam Public Works (APW) has filed yet another case with the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) against M/S Wipro Limited (System Integrator) and the then State Coordinator, National Register of Citizens (NRC), Assam, Prateek Hajela levelling allegations of misappropriating huge amounts of public money during the updation of the NRC in Assam. The case was filed on 18th May.
As mentioned in the FIR, during the process of NRC updation, M/S Wipro Limited was entrusted as one of the prime software installation companies by Prateek Hajela, Ex-State Coordinator, NRC. Accordingly, M/S Wipro Limited, as System Integrator, worked in the process of updation of NRC for the state of Assam.
M/S Wipro Limited also submitted bills from time to time for software installation and other system-oriented works. Out of those, a bill was submitted by M/S Wipro Limited (System Integrator) amounting to Rs 1.27 crores for procurement of “Oracle Standard One Edition” and “Oracle Intelligence Server Enterprise Edition,” the amount of which was paid during the months from February 2017 to August 2017.
However, as per the ground report of the National Institute of Smart Governance (NISG) submitted to the Office of the Accountant General (AUDIT), Assam, no such system was apparently installed and used for the updation of NRC in Assam. APW has levelled the allegation that the amount was cleared by the ex-NRC State Coordinator of Assam by indulging in conspiracy and mutual understanding with M/S Wipro Limited, as revealed from the report.
Another instance of misappropriation that has allegedly come to light after the report of the Accountant General (AUDIT) is the submission of false bills showing purchase of generators. Allegedly, these were shown to have been purchased and installed at 2,500 NRC Seva Kendras (NSK).
M/S Wipro Limited submitted a bill of 1-2 KVA sets of generators that were shown to be purchased and installed at 2,500 NSKs all over the state of Assam. Each generator was allegedly purchased for Rs 93,964/-. Accordingly, an amount of Rs 34.76 crores was released to M/S Wipro Limited for the installation of 3,700 generators.
However, during on-field enquiry at some NSKs, the Auditor apparently came to know that the generators had not been purchased but hired and moreover, the market price of the hired generators were also not Rs 93,964/- each only as submitted in the bill, but were Rs 35,000/- each. APW has alleged that this clearly indicates the involvement of the then State Coordinator, NRC with M/S Wipro Limited causing a huge amount of loss to the government exchequer.
APW has requested the CBI to initiate a case against both M/S Wipro Limited and Prateek Hajela.
Reportedly, this is the sixth FIR filed with the CBI against Hajela and “his close aides” by APW.
Abhijeet Sharma, President of APW, speaking to G Plus said, "Both central and state governments are silent and not interested in taking steps against the corruption done in the NRC process. Even the investigation agencies are not interested to find out the truths of corruption in NRC. If no step is taken even after this FIR we will be moving the High Court in this regard."
G Plus reached out to the former NRC state-coordinator, Prateek Hajela, who cited ignorance about the FIRs filed against him and declined to comment on the issue as of now. G Plus also tried to reach out to the local office of M/S Wipro Limited who responded that they were not authorised to make a statement in this regard. The local office of M/S Wipro Limited also could not provide the name of an appropriate authority in the company who could have offered the company’s views.
- Multi-Crore Corruption Charges
- Prateek Hajela
- Assam Public Works (APW)