Lucknow: Lambasting the Uttar Pradesh government for misusing the funds meant for National Rural Health Mission (NRHM), the Lucknow bench of Allahabad High Court has asked the government’s counsel to explain as to why the fund was used to pay salaries to the employees of the Family Welfare Department.

A two-judge bench of Justice Pradeep Kant and Justice Ritu Raj Awasthi was hearing the PIL filed by Sachchidanand Gupta, demanding that both the state and the Central governments must answer for the alleged irregularities in NHRM.

The High Court queried whether using Central government funds for other purposes stand as misuse or not?

Answering on behalf of the Central government, Additional Solicitor General Ashok Nigam affirmed that a CAG audit report also confirms the alleged bungling of NHRM funds.

Defending the state government, Additional Advocate General Jaideep Narain Mathur argued that there should be a CAG investigation before ordering a CBI inquiry into NHRM scam.

On the other hand, the petitioner recalled that two Chief Medical Officers have been murdered in connection with the NHRM scam. Many high profile people are suspected to be behind the scam. As the CBI is investigating the irregularities in Lucknow, the court must direct CBI investigations into the health mission across the state, the petitioner argued.

The court has set September 9 for the next hearing in the case.