Days after the Maha Vikas Aghadi government formed a four-member committee to probe the lapses and irregularities in the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP)-led government’s ambitious Jalyukt Shivar Yojana (JSY), Water Resources Minister Jayant Patil, on Thursday, fired a fresh salvo against former Chief Minister Devendra Fandnavis for his loud claims over the its success during his tenure.

Patil said Fadnavis’ claim that JSY helped the storage of additional 70 TMC water was wrong. “70 TMC of water is more than double the water of Warna dam. If 70 TMC of excess water could be stored, it would have benefited the drought prone areas. In reality, however, nothing like that has happened,’’ he added.

On the contrary, Patil charged that inferior work increased the leakage rate in the reservoirs, which severely impacted water storage. He reminded that the government has already launched an open inquiry and appropriate action will be taken against those responsible for the irregularities and faulty work.

Already the Water Resources Department has suspended few engineers and some more are likely to face similar action. The government, early this month, announced an inquiry based on the scathing observations made by the Comptroller and Auditor General (CAG) in its report.

CAG had observed that JSY had a little impact in achieving water neutrality and increasing groundwater level despite spending a whopping Rs 9,633.75 crore. The committee would hold an open inquiry into 1,120 works in 120 villages examined by the CAG. It will suggest administrative or divisional inquiry into these works.

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Free Press Journal