- NET Web Desk
The Assam government today refuted media allegations claiming that CM Himanta Biswa Sarma’s family was implicated in alleged malpractices of PPE kits’ supply during the unprecedented times of COVID-19 pandemic.
According to the state government’s spokesperson and Minister for Water Resources, Parliamentary Affairs, Information & Public Relations, Printing & Stationery – Pijush Hazarika; there was no scam in the supply of PPE kits and no member of the CM’s family were involved with the supply of any material related to the COVID pandemic.
The claims are “false, imaginary, vicious”, and may be traced to a “particular section with vested interests” – informed Hazarika.
“Instead of making false and unsubstantiated allegations, why aren’t the two organizations (who made the claims) moving to court if they have evidence?” – he remarked.
As per a joint investigative report published on June 1, two digital media organizations – New Delhi’s ‘The Wire’ and Guwahati’s ‘The Crosscurrent’ – the Assam government had placed four COVID-19-related emergency medical supply orders without following proper guidelines.
During the pandemic’s outbreak two years ago, specialists believed that PPE kits might provide complete protection against COVID-19 infection. However, there was no company manufacturing the kits in Assam, and certain state administrations had ceased transporting them because they required them, according to Hazarika.
He further added that “It is impossible to obey the general rules and regulations in an emergency situation.” “The Cabinet had decided to form a committee, and if its members granted their approval to purchase the necessary kits and equipment to deal with the crisis, it might be purchased”.
As a result, orders for PPE kits were placed with 35 companies, with only nine of them being able to offer them to the government. According to him, the websites referred to a firm that received an order for only Rs 85 lakhs.