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Home > News > PTI

HC seeks report on 'irregularities' at Mahatma's samadhi

October 01, 2006 18:55 IST

Even as the nation gears up to celebrate this year's Gandhi Jayanthi, the Mahatma's samadhi at Rajghat is embroiled in a controversy as the Delhi High Court sought an explanation from the management committee on alleged irregularities at the mausoleum of the man who epitomised truth, honesty and non-violence.

A Division Bench of Acting Chief Justice Vijender Jain and Justice Kailash Gambhir asked Rajghat Samithi secretary
Rajnish Kumar to file a personal affidavit on the charges within four weeks and posted the matter for further hearing to
December 8. 

The court sought the explanation on a petition filed by a group of Rajghat employees who accused Kumar of illegally
holding the dual posts of secretary and caretaker of the mausoleum and indulging in largescale irregularities.

The petitioners said 144 of the 186 boards with names of trees planted around the samadhi by visiting dignitaries in
the past had been found missing or damaged, resulting in loss of Rs 3.31 lakh.

They also alleged that the foreign visitors at the samadhi were overcharged at the shoe-deposit counter.

The petition quoted an official circular, wherein the secretary had sought replacement of a board that went missing from a tree planted by a Ukranian VVIP.

Though visitors are to be charged Re 1 only for custody of a pair of footwear at the counter, certain staff members were allegedly collecting Rs 10 to Rs 50 from foreign visitors at the behest of scretary.

The petition also made several other allegations of financial embezzlement by the secretary, and sought a CBI inquiry into the matter as the 'samadhi' was under Central government control.

However, the Bench refrained from conceding the plea for a CBI inquiry and directed the secretary to file his replies on the charges.

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