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Assam: CAG suspects scam of Rs 260 crore, blamed then coordinator IAS Prateek Hajela

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Batori24 Bureau
Batori24 Bureau
Batori24 is a Vernacular based Assamese news portal based in Guwahati Assam. We are a dedicated news channel covering news and stories across the globe with special reference to Assam, north-east along with National and International news.

The Assam National Register of Citizens (NRC) final list, which has yet to be released, has raised new concerns about the process’s legitimacy.

The latest CAG report from India’s Comptroller and Auditor General reveals a number of irregularities in the use of funds, including excessive and inadmissible payments to vendors.

Furthermore, the audit discovered a lack of proper planning by NRC, as 215 software utilities were added haphazardly to the core software during the update process.

 

The audit trail could have ensured accountability for NRC data veracity. As a result, the intended goal of preparing a valid error-free NRC has not yet been met, according to the report.

According to the CAG report, the project cost for the NRC has risen from Rs 288.18 crore to Rs 1602.66 crore due to the time over which it was originally planned.

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Former NRC co-ordinator Hitesh Dev Sarma had filed a FIR with the state government’s vigilance and anti-corruption wing, alleging corruption and money laundering by his predecessor Prateek Hajela.

The NRC is a removal exercise for illegal immigrants. The draught list was published in July 2018, excluding 19.06 lakh applications out of 3.30 crore due to a lack of adequate documents for establishing Indian citizenship.

On the other hand, highly secure and reliable software was required to be developed during the NRC update process; however, the audit discovered a lack of proper planning in this regard, to the extent that 215 software utilities were added haphazardly to the core software, posing a risk of data tampering, according to the CAG report.

Notably, these were carried out without adhering to the proper processes of software development or vendor selection via eligibility assessment following a national tendering.

The risk of data tampering was increased by the haphazard development of software and utilities for NRC data capture and correction, which left no audit trail.

 

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