Welcoming the Central Bureau of Investigation’s (CBI) willingness to probe West Bengal government’s sale of its 47 per cent stake in the Metro Dairy project to a private company, Darjeeling MP Raju Bista has said that they would request the Calcutta High Court to instruct the CBI to also inquire into the alleged mismanagement and siphoning off of funds from the Himalayan Cooperative Milk Producers’ Union Limited (HIMUL), which allegedly led to its closure.
Following Berhampore MP Adhir Ranjan Chowdhury’s appeal to the Calcutta HC, the CBI informed the Court yesterday that they were ready to probe the West Bengal government’s sale of its 47 per cent stake in the Metro Dairy project.
Bista, also a BJP national spokesperson, said today, “Metro Dairy was set up by the government using public funds in 1991. By selling a majority share of the company for such a low price, the Trinamool Congress led government has allegedly caused a deliberate loss of at least Rs 500 crores to the public.” “Therefore, the willingness shown by the CBI to probe into this obvious scam is welcome,” Bista said.
“This also neatly ties into Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee’s recent references to converting HIMUL to Bangla Dairy. She was also referring to using HIMUL land for private industries. HIMUL, which was based on the same set up as AMUL was at one point in time a very profitable and revenue surplus entity for entire North Bengal,” he added.
According to the MP, due to the “gross mismanagement” by the TMC government, HIMUL has been forced to shut down its operations. “I fear that much like Metro Dairy, the TMC Government will give away HIMUL assets too to their cronies, while keeping the HIMUL cooperative members are deprived of the funds,” Bista added.