In the wake of the Comptroller and Auditor General’s (CAG) report on the implementation of public-private-partnership for Delhi International Airport Ltd, the CPI (M) has claimed that Prime Minister Manmohan Singh was aware of the alleged “criminal malpractices” in the running of the airport.

Talking to reporters here on Monday, CPI (M) MP in the Rajya Sabha K.N. Balagopal demanded an investigation by a federal agency into the issue.

He said, based on the CAG report, the Government should immediately stop the ongoing collection of user development fee in Delhi airport.

Balagopal said he had written to the Prime Minister, the current and past Civil Aviation Ministers about the illegality in collecting airport development fee in the Delhi airport several times in the past.

“Our stand on the issue has been vindicated by the CAG report. It proves that there is a criminal conspiracy on the part of the Government to help the private developer,” he alleged.

He said the Government should take steps to get back the amount so far collected by DIAL as airport development fee. He said “the huge wealth of land” with DIAL should also be handed over to the Airports Authority of India and the Government should run the airport in future.

The CPI (M) MP said the Prime Minister was well aware of the malpractices that were being carried out by the private developer, and added that the issue had been raised in Parliament, too.

Instead of recovering the money, the Government came out with Draft Rules enabling the private developer to collect user fee.

Balagopal said various MPs, cutting across party lines, had warned the Government about the illegality of the Rules at that time.

jigeesh.am@thehindu.co.in

(This article was published on August 20, 2012)
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