The Gujarat unit of the Congress has demanded the resignation of Textiles Minister Smriti Irani for alleged financial irregularities in spending from her MP Local Area Development (MPLAD) funds.

Irani, a Rajya Sabha member from Gujarat, had adopted a village in Anand district under the Sansad Adarsh Gram Yojana (SAGY) in which the irregularities have taken place, the Congress has alleged, while demanding her resignation from the Union Ministry.

Gujarat Pradesh Congress Committee president Amit Chavda has said the Union Textiles Minister had spent the MPLAD funds without inviting any tenders in her adopted village Maghrol in Anand district of central Gujarat.

Chavda has said that the contracts for the works were awarded without tenders to Sharda Manjoor Kamdar Sahkari Mandli under pressure from Irani and her staff.

“Smriti Irani and her staff had coerced the officials into awarding contracts to one Sharda Majoor Kamdar Sahkari Mandli… so that funds could be easily misused and misappropriated and fraud goes unnoticed”, said the GPCC chief.

The Congress had in July 2017 moved the Gujarat High Court against the alleged irregularities after the Anand district administration in its probe found serious ‘malpractices’ in the spending by Irani.

The district collector had on 2 February this year ordered the Mandli to return Rs 2.95 crore to the government with 18 per cent interest. The money has not been deposited into the government’s account till now, said Chavda.

“After these revelations of malpractices, Irani has no moral right to continue as minister”, he said while demanding her resignation.