Uttar Pradesh Power Minister Shrikant Sharma (file photo)
Uttar Pradesh Power Minister Shrikant Sharma (file photo)

EPF scam: UP Energy Minister sends defamation notice to Cong's Ajay Kumar Lallu

ANI | Updated: Nov 07, 2019 22:45 IST

Lucknow (Uttar Pradesh) [India], Oct 7 (ANI): Uttar Pradesh Power Minister Shrikant Sharma on Thursday sent a defamation notice to Uttar Pradesh Congress Committee (UPCC) president Ajay Kumar Lallu, asking him to apologise within a week for making "baseless allegations" against him regarding the Rs 2,600 crore EPF scam in the state power department.
The notice has been sent for giving false, objectionable and indecent statements against Sharma on media platforms.
In the notice, the Energy Department said that Sharma had no role in the transfer of funds to Dewan Housing Finance Corp Ltd or Sunblink company and he never met any officials of those companies.
"Sharma did not go abroad only in September-October. The provident funds are managed by a trust in which he does not hold any position and he has no role in this task," the notice said.
The decision to transfer funds to DHFL has nothing do with Sharma's tenure as the work belongs to the former government.
In the notice, the Energy Minister made it clear that he should take special caution about his remarks in future.
"Lallu's conduct was not only contrary to the limitations of public life but was also defamatory for the person who performed his duties in a social manner," Sharma said.
The Energy Minister said that if Lallu did not apologise then criminal proceedings for defamation would be taken against him under sections 499 and 500 of Indian Penal Code as well as civil procedure.
Lallu had alleged that BJP government was involved in investing over Rs 2,600 crore of provident fund of state government employees in DHFL company.

"The company representatives visited the Power Minister Shrikant Sharma. The BJP government, Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath and Sharma are involved in this matter. Sharma should be dismissed as soon as possible," Lallu had said.

Two officers have been arrested in a case related to the alleged investment of Uttar Pradesh power employees' provident fund money in scam-hit Dewan Housing Finance Corporation Limited (DHFL).

Praveen Kumar Gupta, who was the secretary of the Uttar Pradesh State Power Employees Trust and the Provident Fund Trust of the Uttar Pradesh Power Corporation in 2016, and the then Director, Finance, Sudhanshu Dwivedi were arrested after an FIR was lodged against them at the Hazratganj police station here.

The FIR was registered against the officers on the directions of Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath on Saturday.

According to available records, Rs 2,631.20 crore of employees' General Provident Fund was invested in DHFL out of which Rs 1185.5 crore has been returned by the finance company. A total of Rs 1491.50 crore of Contributory Provident Fund was invested in the company out of which Rs 669.30 crore has been received by the trust. DHFL is yet to return Rs 2267.9 crore (principal amount) of GPF and CPF to the trust, the statement said. (ANI)