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CBI questions Mayawati in Taj corridor case

September01, 2003 18:28 IST

The Central Bureau of Investigation on Monday questioned former Uttar Pradesh chief minister Mayawati in Lucknow in connection with the multicrore Taj Heritage corridor

She was questioned about the allegations that the work for the controversial project was started at the site only after her office gave the go ahead for the project.

According to the CBI the Mayawati government started the project with undue haste. The work, the probe agency said, began on the basis of 'oral orders' issued by the then state environment secretary R K Sharma.

Her questioning followed after the CBI recorded the statement of her Personal Secretary P L Punia.

A Lucknow report quoting CBI sources said the five-member CBI team led by DIG Neeraj Nayan questioned Mayawati for over two hours at her 13, Mall Avenue residence.

A senior official said Mayawati's statement was recorded in connection with the Rs 175 crore project in which Rs 17 crore had already been released.

Mayawati had earlier claimed that she was not aware of the project and was kept in the dark by state government officials.

The sources refused to elaborate as to what exactly Mayawati had said but claimed she had 'spilled the beans'.

The interrogation of the former chief minister was on the cards after the Supreme Court, under whose order the CBI had initiated the probe, had ordered the investigating agency to quiz the 'high and mighty' and file the report by September 11.

The sources also said the CBI questioned the former chief minister regarding her financial assets and inquired as from where she got the money to celebrate her 47th birthday in January this year.

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