Guwahati: Ranee Narah, a former Congress MP and ex-Union Minister of State from Assam, was questioned by the Chief Minister’s vigilance cell for nearly six hours in connection with the alleged Rs 1 crore rupee tube-well scandal.
Accompanied by her husband Bharat Narah, an MLA and former state minister, Narah reached the Special Vigilance Cell of the CM’s Office at 11 a.m. on Tuesday.
After coming out of the vigilance office at 4:47 p.m., the Congress leader told mediapersons, “I responded to all the queries of the investigating officers. I am satisfied with my answers, and I think they were satisfied as well.”
When Narah was the Union Minister of State for Tribal Affairs in the UPA government from 2012 to 2014, it was alleged that misappropriation of funds took place for the installation of hand pumps in Jorhat district in 2013-14.
Following a CAG report on the irregularities, a report to the state Assembly’s Public Accounts Committee (PAC) led to the filing of a complaint in 2017, accusing Narah’s MPLAD scheme of widespread financial mismanagement.
Meanwhile, allegations of land grabbing against the former Lakhimpur MP and her husband Bharat Narah also surfaced.
The Narah couple is charged with trespassing on public property when they started a tea estate under the name ‘Ranee Narah’.
Manab Deka, a BJP MLA from Lakhimpur, claimed that in addition to encroaching on government property, the Narah couple also forcibly evicted other flood-affected families who had relocated there after losing their homes and other possessions in a series of floods.
“After trespassing on government property and forcibly evicting several landless farmers who were camped there, Bharat Narah and his wife Ranee Narah established a tea estate,” Deka claimed.
The BJP MLA alleged that the Narah couple had sought for possession of 128 bighas of land through the Mission Vasundhara portal when Bharat Narah was a minister in the previous Congress government.
Deka further alleged that one bigha and four kathas of Bharat Narah’s residential property in Boginadi are part of government land that he and his wife illegally appropriated.