Lucknow: The Lucknow bench of Allahabad High Court has pulled up the Rural Development Ministry over the demands of a CBI inquiry into the Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment Guarantee Act (MNREGA) scam. The court asked the ministry, “When the Centre holds the right to conduct a CBI inquiry into the case, why isn't it doing so?”

The bench asked the Secretary of the Rural Development Ministry to present his stand in the court on March 14. The order was given by joint bench of Senior Justice Uma Nath Singh and Justice Ritu Raj Awasthi during the hearing on the petition filed by Advocate Kamini Jaiswal and Gaurav Mitra on behalf of Sachidanand Gupta.

Kamini Jaiswal’s Lawyer told the bench, “The central government holds the right to order a CBI inquiry into the scam under Section 27 of the MNREGA Act.”

 According to the petition, corruption in MNREGA has surfaced in several villages but neither the Centre nor the state government has shown inclination for an unbiased probe. The petition further states that the Centre has given several crores of rupees to the state government in the name of providing 100 days of employment to poor labourers which has been grossly misused.