From a Correspondent
Tezpur, Nov 22: Major anomalies have been alleged at Singhitali Gaon Panchayat under Balipara Development Block in Sonitpur district under the garb of development. Sources said that government development schemes were being suffocated by corruption at Singhitali Gaon Panchayat under Balipara Development Block under the patroge of some corrupt officials and officers of the Sonitpur District Village Development Project Department. In the initial years of MGNREGA, there were reports of rampant corruption as the process was mostly manual. Fake entries were made in job sheets to divert funds, while job cards were given to fake beneficiaries.
In many cases, people held multiple cards in a bid to draw added benefits. People from Singhitali Gaon Panchayat area came out on the tiol highway to protest against the corrupt practices being practised under the active assistance of some unscrupulous BDO, Junior Engineer and representatives of Gaon Panchayat.
Later, they staged protest in front of the Singhitali Gaon Panchayat office and shouted slogans. Allegations have been made against the president of the Singhitali Gaon Panchayat, Ajgar Ali, for large-scale plundering of funds allotted for development projects, sources said.
Local people alleged that Ajgar Ali, president of the panchayat, and Anil Borthakur, Junior Engineer, had been carrying out their illegal activities of looting funds allotted for various schemes under MGNREGA since 2013. They added, “We had lodged a complaint before the Sonitpur District Administration in writing for proper investigation and accordingly, Bashree th, Project Director, was directed to investigate the case but the officer, instead of investigating the issue himself, entrusted the task of investigation to another officer. We are not convinced with the investigation process as the officers were quick in finding the number of job cards rather than to investigate the various alleged schemes. We appeal to the authority concerned to intervene in this issue.”
Ramesh Das, retired teacher and social worker of the greater Balipara area, said, “There are many such schemes which had been implemented from 2014 to 2017 at Rajgarh, Sighitali, Khaliamari village areas under Singhitali Gaon Panchayat. But these schemes are all implemented only in paper and the entire fund is siphoned off.”