The Central Bureau of Investigation on Tuesday summoned Congress leader and former Manipur Chief Minister Okram Ibobi Singh in connection with a first information report registered in November 2019, for alleged misappropriation of state government funds worth Rs 332 crore, the Hindustan Times reported. The CBI asked Singh to appear before it on Wednesday. A CBI team is already in Manipur to question Singh and other officials.
The development comes days after a political crisis erupted in Manipur, with nine MLAs of the ruling Bharatiya Janata Party-led coalition resigning from their posts. Following this, the Congress staked claim to form the government under the leadership of Singh, and asked Governor Najma Heptulla for a no-confidence motion in the Assembly.
National People’s Party President Thangminlien Kipgen on Sunday issued a statement, alleging that the BJP was running the government in an autocratic manner and refused to form a steering committee. The National People’s Party had four MLAs, all ministers, in the government, all of whom quit their posts. This included Deputy Chief Minister Y Joykumar Singh.
However, on Monday, BJP leader Himanta Biswa Sarma ruled out any threat to the state government, after holding talks with National People’s Party leaders.
The CBI had taken over the case against Okram Ibobi Singh on November 20 last year on the request of the Manipur government, India Today reported. That month, the CBI had conducted searches at nine locations in Aizawl, Imphal and Gurugram in connection with the scandal. It is alleged that Okram Ibobi Singh misappropriated the funds while serving as the chairperson of the Manipur Development Society from June 30, 2009, to July 06, 2017.
The CBI has also named retired Indian Administrative Service officers DS Poonia, PC Lawmuknga and O Nabakishore Singh in the FIR.