New Delhi: The definition of poor (read economically weak class) and their search has proved a tough nut to crack for the Delhi government. After being slammed by the Lokayukta for failing to provide flats to people hailing from financially weak background under the Rajiv Ratna Awas Yojna, the Delhi government has come up with a ‘not-so-perfect’ alibi of failing to find the deserving candidates.

State Public Works Department (PWD) Minister Rajkumar Chauhan termed the Lokayukta’s remarks as interference on government projects. He was quick to advise the Lokayukta to remain confined to the task of taking up issues related to corruption.

According to the PWD minister, the low cost flats could not be handed over to the beneficiaries as more than 60 percent of them failed to provide the legal documents to support their poor financial status.

In 2008, Delhi Chief Minister Sheila Dixit had assured to provide flats at minimal prices to people from financially weak background. When she failed to fulfill her commitment for over a year, Advocate Suneeta Bharadwaj had filed a complaint in this regard with the Lokayukta in October 2009.

The Lokayukta Court in its decision on Monday termed the government’s promise as a misleading one and has asked the President to convey to the Delhi Chief Minister to avoid making such fake promises in future.

The government in its version explained that it had not deceived the people and the projects related to the construction of flats are underway. However, the large number of applicants are yet to complete the legal formalities required for the project.

Clearing the present status of the project, the PWD Minister said, “74,148 flats have to be constructed under Jawaharlal Nehru National Urban Renewal Mission (JNNURM), out of which, the construction of 9,660 flats have been completed.” He told that 5,163 flats are under construction, whereas the tender process has been started for the remaining 44,360 flats.

(JPN/Bureau)