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Center to ‘nail’ Congress for scams in Goa

  • Hiral Patel
  • August 3, 2015
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Defence Minister Manohar Parrikar has promised assistance from the center to nail the scams of the erstwhile Congress-led coalition government in Goa.

At a party workers meeting near Panaji on Saturday, the Defense Minister targeted former Congress Chief Minister of Goa Digambar Kamat, who has already been questioned in connection with the $976,630 Louis Berger bribery scam.

Top officials of Louis Berger have already pleaded guilty to a New Jersey District Court to offering bribes and Kickbacks of $3.9 million to secure contracts in countries such as India, Vietnam, Indonesia and Kuwait. While the settlement announced by the US Justice Department did not identify the politicians and officials who were offered bribes, the documents revealed that $976,630 was paid in bribes during 2009-2010 to a Goa minister and other officials.

Manohar Parrikar said,

This Louis Berger scam is just the tip of the iceberg. We will bring out all the Congress scams in the open now, they will be exposed. I guarantee that I will offer whatever help is needed to expose them from the centre, right from the Enforcement Directorate, Income Tax and the CBI.

Louis Berger was part of a consortium that eventually won a contract to execute a multi-billion dollar water and sewerage project in Goa worth Rs.1,031 crore funded by the Japan International Co-operation Agency (JICA).

Congress MLA Digambar Kamat, who was the Chief Minister in 2010 has already been questioned, along with former public works department minister Churchill Alemao, who was a cabinet minister at the time. It is worth noting that Kamat also held the finance ministry at the time.

Manohar Parrikar justifying the accusation on Kamat said,

It is clearly said in the US District Court order that they have paid bribes to Goa ministers. Now there are only two ministers in the zone of consideration. No other ministers are related to this. PWD (minister) is natural, but along with PWD minister there is also the finance (minister) who has to release the money. If he does not release the money, this cannot happen.

Despite the mountain of evidence against him Kamat has already denied his role in the scam repeatedly.

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