Odisha News Insight

Congress in a Fix over 2010 Bribery Charges against former Goa Minister

Louis BergerThe Congress Party, which sought to put the Modi Government on the mat over alleged corruption and impropriety charges against Vasundhara Raje, Sushma Swaraj and Shivraj Singh Chauhan, has found itself in a tight spot after it was confirmed that Construction management firm Louis Berger had bribed Indian officials and a Minister to win two major water development projects in Goa and Guwahati. Name of that Minister has not been disclosed yet.

The incident occurred in 2010 when the UPA government was in power. Also, both Goa and Assam were ruled by the Congress. While BJP is in power in Goa since 2012, Tarun Gogoi remains the Chief Minister of Assam since 2001. The bribery of $976,630 was paid for the Goa project.

Congress leader Digambar Kamat was the Chief Minister and Churchill Alemao was Public Works Department Minister when the bribery was paid to a minister for the Goa project. Goa CM Laxmikant Parsekar has demanded a CBI probe into the matter.

Louis Berger confessed to the bribery allegations and agreed to pay a fine of $17.1 million criminal fee to resolve the matter. Two of its former executives – Richard Hirsch (61) of Philippines and James McClung (59) of the UAE pleaded guilty to the bribery charges. They had paid bribery to officials and politicians in India, Indonesia, Vietnam and Kuwait.

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