CBI grills ex-CM Ibobi in Rs. 332 cr scam case

AGENCIES
NEWDELHI, 24th Jun: The CBI questioned Congress leader and former Manipur chief minister O Ibobi Singh in Imphal for nearly three hours on Wednesday in connection with alleged misappropriation of Rs 332 crore development funds for the state, officials said.
The probe agency has summoned retired IAS officer O Nabakishore Singh, also a former chairman of Manipur Development Society, for questioning on Thursday, they said. Both O Ibobi Singh and O Nabakishore Singh have been booked as they held the post of chairman, Manipur Development Society, where the alleged embezzlement of funds took place, they said.
The CBI action came at a time when BJP-led coalition government in the state government has plunged into crisis after nine MLAs withdrew support.
The BJP on Tuesday took four National People's Party (NPP) ministers who resigned from the N Biren Singh-led Manipur government to Delhi for a meeting with central leaders to salvage the situation in the north-eastern state, BJP sources said.
The N Biren government was reduced to a minority after nine MLAs -- four of the NPP, three of the BJP, one of the Trinamool Congress and an Independent -- withdrew support and went to the opposition Congress, which subsequently staked claim to form an alliance government.
A CBI team from the agency headquarters here had reached Imphal on Tuesday for questioning the accused based there.
When asked about the timing of the questioning, the agency officials had said it was part of an ongoing investigation in which some persons have already been examined.
The CBI had taken over the case on November 20 last year on the request of the state's BJP government.
It is alleged that Ibobi Singh conspired with others during his tenure as the chairman of the Manipur Development Society (MDS) from June 2009 to July 2017, and misappropriated government funds worth approximately Rs 332 crore, out of Rs 518 crore that was entrusted to them for development works, according to the officials.
During the questioning that started around 11.30 am, the CBI team asked the former Chief Minister about amassing of huge wealth between 2009 to 2017, when he was the MDS chairman.
The CBI took over the case on the state government's request and after the permission of the central government.
Y Ningthem Singh, the former project director of MDS and S Ranjit Singh, its administrative officer have also been named in the FIR.


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