Alleged Irregularities in Fundraising for Taluk Hospital

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KANNUR

A People’s Action Council in Panur accused a cross-party committee led by KP Mohanan, MP for Koothuparamba, of raising funds without permission to buy land for the construction of a taluk hospital there.

E. Maneesh, chairman of the council, said the committee was established in 2014 when Mr. Mohanan was a minister in the Oommen Chandy cabinet. He raised money from people in 2015, saying the government had approved a proposal to turn the community health center in Panur into a taluk hospital. Although they reportedly collected over ₹4 crore, the process was neither audited nor the receipts subjected to public scrutiny.

When the Vigilance and Anti-Corruption Office and the District Legal Services Authority conducted an investigation based on Mr Maneesh’s complaint, the committee claimed that 1.23 acres of land had been identified as an advance of Rs 1.5 crore paid to the owner of the land. Mr Maneesh, however, alleged the money was handed over without a proper agreement.

“They did not submit details of the funds raised saying the process was not complete. They also said the land would be purchased immediately. That never happened,” he said.

Meanwhile, the Left Democratic Front government that came to power in 2016 sanctioned Rs. 25 crores for land acquisition and construction of basic infrastructure for the community health center.

Charge denied

The popular committee, however, denied these allegations.

KP Praveen, one of the committee members, said that Rs. 74 lakh has been collected from the people. Mr. Mohanan, as chairman, had taken Rs. 26 lakh on loan from various people to buy the land. When the land transaction did not take place, the landowner returned the money. It was deposited in two bank accounts. The funds raised would be handed over to the government when the hospital was built, he said.

Mr. Maneesh sought to know the source from which Mr. Mohanan took the loan. “Why didn’t he provide the details to the committee?” he asked.

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