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MP Lokayukta Issues Notices to 15 Officers Over ‘Corruption’ in Mahakal Lok Corridor

Kashif Kakvi |
The notices were issued following a complaint by Ujjain’s Congress MLA Mahesh Parmar alleging financial irregularities in the construction.
The total cost of 900-plus metre-long Mahakal Lok corridor is Rs 856 crore. Image: Kashif Kakvi

The total cost of 900-plus metre-long Mahakal Lok corridor is Rs 856 crore. Image: Kashif Kakvi

Bhopal: Almost a week after Prime Minister Narendra Modi inaugurated the Rs 316 crore first phase of the Mahakal Lok corridor at Mahakaleshwar Temple, Ujjain, the Madhya Pradesh Lokayukta has issued notices to 15 officials on the complaint of Ujjain’s Congress MLA Mahesh Parmar alleging financial irregularities in the construction and sought reply by October 28.

The officials who have been issued notices include Ujjain district collector Asheesh Singh, who is also the chairman of Ujjain Smart City LTD, former executive director of Ujjain Smart City and IAS officer Kshitij Singhal and former municipal commissioner Ansul Gupta and 12 others.  

Parmar alleged that the officers misused their official position to give tender to a Gujarat-based construction company MP Babariya by ignoring the lower capping rate tenders and also altered the project design to benefit the contractors in crores.

Consequently, the parking lot along the corridor is of “poor quality” and the contractors allegedly increased the number of “undue invoices” which were allegedly cleared by officials without adequate verification, Parmar further alleged in the complaint.

The Lokayukta issued the notices after the allegations made in the complaint were found correct during the initial investigation, according to the copy of the order.


The corridor traverses the temple’s expanded premises and includes a holding plaza for the main temple. Shiva Purana stories are depicted in murals on the walls. Just before the inauguration, the corridor had become the bone of contention between the Congress and the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP).

“This is just the tip of the iceberg. Similar cases of corruption will unfold once the investigation starts. The preliminary investigation sniffed the corruption and it proves that officers and contractors did not even spare god Mahakal and duped him and his followers,” Parmar told Newsclick. “The corridor has more than 40-50 statues but are made up of fibre, which doesn’t last long. It should have been made of Ashtadhatu (eight metals used for casting metallic idols). The temples and religious structures built by our ancestors are standing even after 2,000 years. For how long will the substandard statue last?” Parmar added.

Former chief minister and state Congress president Kamal Nath, who claimed to have initiated the project in 2019, demanded a high-level inquiry into the alleged irregularities.

“Every plan and project undertaken by the Shivraj [Singh Chouhan] government has evidence of corruption. Whether it be the present nutritious food programme, ration distribution for the needy, Karam Dam building, Simhastha anomalies involving the planting of saplings, Vyapam, dumper, e-tender, or any other such matter (sic),” Nath tweeted in Hindi.

“Now, the news of corruption in the construction of Mahakal Lok is worrisome. It hurt the feelings of crores of devotees. A high-level and impartial investigation needs to be conducted. Anyone found guilty should not be spared,” Nath further tweeted.

Hitting back at the Congress, state BJP spokesperson Hitesh Bajpa told Newsclick, “The state’s Lokayukta is probing the matter and the law will take its course as per the findings.”

On charges of corruption levelled against the BJP government, Bajpa said, “The Congress is already a tainted party in terms of corruption. The BJP doesn’t need sermons from Congress over corruption.”

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