ITANAGAR, Jul 6: Animal Husbandry, Veterinary & Dairy Development Parliamentary Secretary Tamar Murtem asserted that the allegations levelled against him by the Arunachal Pradesh Congress Committee (APCC) regarding his involvement in the misappropriation of compensation funds under the Trans-Arunachal Highway (TAH) project in Lower Subansiri district are baseless and without evidence.
Saying that the allegation levelled by the APCC on 4 July was an attempt to tarnish his image, Murtem demanded that the APCC withdraw its statement within a week or face defamation charges.
“I have no involvement in the TAH compensation issue from Potin to Bopi,” Murtem told journalists at the press club here on Friday. He said neither he nor his family members are in the beneficiary list of the TAH project from Potin to Bopi.
Responding to the APCC’s demand for inquiry against the MLAs, the parliamentary secretary said he welcomes any investigation, “whether by the SIT or the CBI,” to find out if the MLAs had any role in the compensation disbursement scam.
Speaking on the meeting chaired by Deputy Chief Minister Chowna Mein on 11 January, Murtem said the meeting had been held to discuss reducing the compensation amount which had stood at more than RS 200 crore.
He said it was decided during the meeting to reduce the amount by Rs 100 crore as the central government had rejected the original estimate.
Regarding his silence over the scam, Murtem said since the compensation was already distributed in Kamle district, and since the district was already bifurcated, he had “less scope to comment on the matter.”