first_imgThe BJP government was caught on the wrong foot in the Rajasthan High Court on Tuesday, when the petitioners in a public interest litigation claimed that a tender of ₹23 lakh was floated for Chief Minister Vasundhara Raje’s ‘Gaurav Yatra’ in Sirohi district on the pretext of a “development exhibition for a VIP visit”, even when the matter was sub judice.The High Court was hearing the PIL, moved by lawyer Vibhuti Bhushan Sharma and social activist Sawai Singh, alleging misuse of government machinery and challenging the reported expenditure from the treasury for the Yatra which is a BJP’s programme ahead of the State Assembly election. The petitioners filed a fresh application contending that the State government had misled the court and was guilty of contempt, as it had claimed that a previous order issued to the Public Works Department (PWD) to make arrangements for setting up the stage, sound system and decoration for the march had been withdrawn.A Division Bench headed by Chief Justice Pradeep Nandrajog asked the State government to file its reply and posted the matter for hearing on August 25. The impugned e-tender was floated by the PWD, Abu Road, on August 14 for a work order worth ₹23 lakh during the Gaurav Yatra’s stopover in Pindwara town.The BJP submitted an affidavit, in compliance with the High Court’s direction, with the details of expenditure made during the Yatra’s first phase. The affidavit, which did not append any bills with it, stated that an expenditure of ₹1.07 crore was undertaken for the Yatra.The State government had earlier informed the court that the Yatra was being organised by the BJP and no public money was being spent on it.last_img

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