One more FIR, naming five Maharashtra government officials, was registered on Wednesday by the Nagpur unit of the Anti-Corruption Bureau (ACB) in the multi-crore irrigation scam.
Five officials of Vidarbha Irrigation Development Corporation (VIDC), some of them now retired, were booked under the Prevention of Corruption Act at the Sadar police station in Nagpur, an ACB statement said on late Wednesday night.
The accused were identified by the ACB as the then Executive Engineer of VIDC Keshav Chandrakant Tayde; the then Superintendent Engineer Sanjay Laxman Kholapurkar; the then Chief Engineer (retd) Sopan Ramrao Suryawanshi; the then Executive Director (retd) Rohidas Maroti Landge; senior Divisional Accountant (Gosikhurd) Dhanraj Atmaram Anandagawali.
The ACB said these officials had illegally increased the cost of tender of the Gosikhurd right canal in Bhandara district by Rs 8.5 crore.
Similarly, the officials had not taken the consent of then VIDC Executive Director, based at Mantralaya (state secretariat) in Mumbai and themselves approved the escalated cost, the statement said.
The scam, pegged at around Rs 70,000 crore, relates to alleged corruption and irregularities in approval and execution of various irrigation projects in Maharashtra during the Congress-Nationalist Congress Party rule (1999-2014).
Multiple FIRs against irrigation department officials have been filed in the past.