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news details
ACD office 'den of corruption'
9/4/2018 11:07:05 PM
Asif Iqbal Naik
Early Times Report
Kishtwar, Sept 4: In a latest example of corruption nexus at highest level in Kishtwar, the office of the Assistant Commissioner Development has turned into a den of corruption wherein the bribe money from ground level employees is being collected in a systematic way.
Sources privy to the development alleged that Assistant Director Planning who is posted in the said office for last over four years has been "assigned the duty of up-keeping the track of payments made at block levels by the Block Development Officers, and subsequently he calls the officials for handing over their share after payments are made in the respective blocks."
Sources said the blocks in far-flung areas get maximum funds for various works. Since these areas are far-off and hardly any official visits there, no complaints of corruption are filed either before the government agencies or before the central agencies dealing with graft cases.
Among the 13 blocks in Kishtwar district, Kishtwar block gets least share and had pendency in crores as liability. Sources added that even lower rank employees are receiving the calls for collection of commission share from the vendors.
"Since Kishtwar is approachable block and majority of works has been executed, there was less chance of non-execution of works under various schemes as compared to far off blocks," sources said, adding that material cost payments are being withdrawn in crores without execution of the works. While to keep the job card holders happy, the job days payments are made into their accounts since withdrawal of material cost is parallel to numbers of job days.
The whole exercise is being allegedly carried out with active involvement of some politicians at village levels as some of the former Sarpanchs even are witness to massive growth in terms of accumulation of wealth since crores have been withdrawn as material cost on the name of Sarpanches and Panches.
Not only ACD office gets share, but RRD's Engineering wing responsible for technical sanctions of the various works also gets due share of commission.
Recently several striking MGNREGA employees while talking to "Early Times" resolved that they will not become money collection agents for BDOs and ACD and ask them to collect the same on their own. However they are still being forced to collect the money from vendors directly so that they (seniors) could not get exposed.
The corruption in the RDD department could be judged from the fact that a senior Congress legislator recently demanded a Vigilance probe into the mismanagement and embezzlement in RDD through CBI to probe role of former RDD minister and former Director RDD Jammu in purchase of tree guards, signboards, dustbins, plants, back door appointments. Even as the Vigilance organization registered a case in this regard, the accused are still roaming free.
The RTI activists too complain about non-delivery of the information since the officials fears expose as many works have not been executed on grounds and the RDD department faces allegations of corruption with each passing day, particularly with regard to purchase of material under MGNREGA for various schemes undergoing in the department.
In similar cases two RTIs were filled in the office of the ACD Kishtwar, one dated 17-5-2017 vide receipt No. 153, followed by another RTI on 29-5-2017 vide receipt No. 200. But in response to both the RTIs no information was provided by the concerned BDOs till date.
The information pertains to block Wise details of plantation in Kishtwar district, copy of advertisement published in newspapers inviting tenders, details of plants purchased and payments made thereof including the cost of each plant, copy of fitness certificate of the purchased plants by team of experts, details of payments drawn under MGNREGA for plantation of these plants on ground including tree guards used to protect these plants along with photos and videos of these plants in the form of CD.
Similarly the 2nd RTI was filled to seek information for the period 2016-17/2017-18 on account of quantity of Cement purchased, name of agency from which the cement was purchased, Supply Order No. along with date, quantity of cement purchased from open market, agency from which purchased, supply order No. along with date, authorizing authority who authorized to purchase the material from open market, Xerox copies of Stock Register 2014-15, 2015-2016, 2016-17 & 2017-18
In addition to above details, the information was also sought with regard to construction bridges during the period 2016-17/2017-18 block wise, name of bridge, quantity of steel used, specification of steel used in construction of bridges, agency which supplied the steel, name of committee members who verified the weight and importantly certified copies of certificates furnished by the committee members who verified the weight of steel Bridges in each block.
But to the disappointment, no information was provided by any BDO of Kishtwar district, which raises the finger of suspicion on the works executed by the department.
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