Supreme Court granted a reprieve to Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister
Mayawati in the 175 crore Taj Corridor case, refusing to direct the
state governor T V Rajeshwar to sanction her prosecution in the case. In
his June 3 order, Governor Rajeshwar had refused to grant sanction to
prosecute Mayawati, holding there was no prima facie case and that
corruption and forgery charges against the BSP supremo would “not stand
scrutiny.” The CBI needed the governor’s sanction to proceed against
Mayawati. The Supreme Court special bench headed by Justice SB Sinha
rejected this latest application on the ground that the matter was
beyond its purview.

The Taj Corridor project was
first put forward in 2001 by the Central Pollution Control Board (CPCB)
and the German Technical cooperation, a consultancy firm. It proposed to
give a facelift to the areas surrounding Agra’s major monuments along
the Yamuna by setting up a heritage corridor covering five historical
monuments, including Taj Mahal, Agra Fort, Ram Bagh, Itmad-ud-Daula’s
tomb and Chini ka Rauza. Included in the venture was a blueprint for a
swanky shopping mall. However, the whole plan was in disregard of the
guidelines laid down by the Environment Ministry and the Archaeological
Survey of India (ASI). The grandiose scheme fell to pieces, when it came
under media scrutiny in mid-June 2003. Since then the CBI has been
attempting to nail the accused, with little success.

Via: Times of India, Andhranews
Image: TimesofIndia