MGNREGA: Rs 2.17 Crore mobility charges withdrawn during summer 2016 unrest
Srinagar: The people at the helm of affairs allegedly busy in developing rural areas across Kashmir Valley under Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment Guarantee Act (MGNREGA) have been looting the state exchequer on the one or the other pretext.
A startling revelation under RTI has cast a doubt on the integrity of officials associated with the MGNREGA scheme in Kashmir Valley. “During the Kashmir unrest in 2016, the officials have withdrawn Rs 2.17 Crore as mobility charges that too only from South Kashmir. South Kashmir in 2016 was on edge where curfew, restrictions, violent clashes disrupted life for more than six months. In such a situation, the officials can’t withdraw such a huge amount for their movement even ambulance drivers those days felt sacred in moving from one place to another,” said a worker associated with the scheme.
If sources are to be believed, the BDO Headquarters has virtually become an autocrat who doesn’t take any official into confidence. Sources added that BDO Headquarters forced supporting staff and other employees to go for shutdown after Vigilance raid on Director Rural Development Department. “The concerned Minister never listens to supporting staff. He follows the footsteps of the Director and the BDO Headquarters. If government will initiate a probe, so many scams will surface and so many officials will feel the heat,” said an employee to news agency CNS.
He added that fake vouchers have been prepared to loot the state exchequer. “You will not believe, fatty bills are being prepared to mint the money. Those who raise voice against the loot are being harassed. While officials are busy in loot, supporting staff are being deprived of their earned salaries. They have to wait for months together to get their salaries.”
In several cases, funds have been sanctioned and even withdrawn for various projects, but the progress on works is dismal.
Another employee said that the after the Vigilance raid in hoarding scam, some of the Junior Engineers refused to go on a strike, however, their decision proved costly for them and they were suspended without any delay.
Sources said that top officials have appointed their relatives as engineers given the fact they don’t possess desired degrees. “Even those have been appointed as engineers whose corruption cases are still being investigated by Vigilance.”
Employees said that there are large scale irregularities and bungling in the implementation of MGNREGA scheme in the State, particularly in Kashmir, that needs to be probed thoroughly. (CNS)