|Early Times Report|
rajouri, Feb 7: Apprehending inquiry from Commissioner Secretary Forest into the alleged frauds in the Social Forestry Department at Sunderbani here, a team of "tainted officials" whose conduct has been under scanner for years, on Tuesday called on a senior BJP leader seeking his "refuge."
Sources said the meeting lasted for around two hours during which the team of allegedly tainted officers told the leader that they where "willing to do anything for him" provided he assures them that their "skin will not be touched."
Sources said the BJP leader assured the visiting officials that they "need not worry for any frauds" till the they behave like "his disciplines." Sources said team of officials and their subordinates called on the neta after getting feelers from the Civil Secretariat Jammu that the Commissioner was likely to call an inquiry into the large scale wrongdoings, ranging from illegal promotions to embezzlement of government funds and illegal sale of forestland.
While the Early Times has be
n highlighting the scams, a nationally known environmental group has taken cognizance of the reports and plans to submit the same before the Union Forest ministry.
While the Forest Department was likely to initiate inquiry, the intervention of the BJP leader is likely to provide impunity to the "coterie of the tainted officials." The Early Times would however continue to expose the rot.
As already reported except for allegedly harassing Gujjar and Bakerwals living in the area on forestland "allotted to them by the government", the Social Forestry Department has rarely done anything on ground. While a junior maali is illegally working as cashier in the department, a junior Forester accused of land scams has been empowered to work as Ranger, the post which is actually two ranks higher for this officer.
There's equally a fraud in the ongoing plantation of new saplings in the area. Much against recommended standards the Social Forestry Department is planting undersized plants only to save money to mint personal fortunes.
While the Forest Department was likely to initiate inquiry, the intervention of the BJP leader is likely to provide impunity to the "coterie of the tainted officials." The Early Times will however continue to expose the rot.