AP govt orders probe into 'siphoning' of funds in Siemens project

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Amaravati, July 11 (PTI) The Andhra Pradesh government on Sunday ordered a probe by the Crime Investigation Department into the alleged siphoning of public funds by some companies in the name of setting up skill development clusters in the state.

Skill Development and Training Department Principal Secretary G Jayalakshmi issued a memo to this effect and directed the Additional Director General of CID to investigate the matter in detail and do the needful in accordance with law.

The Principal Secretary said a forensic audit ordered by the AP State Skill Development Corporation concluded that two companies, Siemens and Design Tech, diverted funds to the tune of Rs 241.78 crore through various shell companies.

She cited the forensic audit report in this regard.

The report also revealed that the two companies utilized only the government contribution of Rs 370.78 crore in contravention of the original scheme, wherein six clusters of skill development centres, centres of excellence and technical skill development institutions were supposed to be set up.

Each cluster was supposed to cost Rs 546.84 crore, with 10 per cent of it being the state government contribution.

'It has been brought to the notice of the government by the central government agencies that a network of companies siphoned off funds from APSSDC through a bogus invoicing scheme pertaining to the Siemens project,' Jayalakshmi said.

The state government, hence, decided to entrust the case investigation to CID, she added. PTI DBV ROH ROH

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