Moneybag ministers taking bemi route: Gogoi's promised law to check corrupt babus yet to get off ground
By Our Staff Reporter
Guwahati, Oct 23: In his budget speech in March this year, Chief Minister Tarun Gogoi had pledged to ect a law to check corruption among government officials.
Seven months on, the proposed Act, which would make it mandatory for bureaucrats to upload photographs of their residences in a website, is yet to see the light of day. In fact, sources said that even the initial processing of the new law is yet to begin, casting doubts over the intent of the Chief Minister.
Even as the State government drags its feet to check corruption in the State, questions are being asked as to why no mechanism has been put in place to probe allegations of disproportiote assets by ministers, who are alleged to have accumulated crores of rupees worth uccounted wealth in the last one and half decade.
It is an open secret that a section of ministers are now owners of TV channels, newspaper houses, luxury hotels, tea gardens, posh apartments and bungalows. Some ministers also have substantial investments in hospitals.
A close scrutiny of the assets of the ministers in 2001 and 2015 could let the cat out of the bag.
While it is imperative for politicians standing for elections to declare their assets through affidavits before the Election Commission, sources in security agencies revealed that most of them do not state the bemi property - assets held in the me of another person, generally some close relative.
To check the generation of black money in the country, the NDA government had in May this year passed the Bemi Transactions (Prohibition) (Amendment) Bill, 2015 which provides for attachment and confiscation of bemi properties and also fine with imprisonment.
But it remains to be seen if this law can put tabs on bemi transactions.