'GP chiefs yet to deposit money, despite order'

'GP chiefs yet to deposit money, despite order'

Inspite of Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment Guarantee Scheme Ombudsman ordering for the recovery of funds misapproprated, the Gram Panchayat officials are yet to deposit the money in the state exchequer even after six months.

The taluk panchayat had sent the reminder several times.

Following the complaint against Harekala Gram Panchayat PDO Chandrahas and Secretary Maruthi Hanumanthappa Bandivaddar on the misappropriation of funds under MGNREGS, the Ombudsman had detected misappropriation of Rs 1,87,835.

During the investigation, the PDO had deposited Rs 44,239. The Ombudsman had directed to deposit the remaining Rs 1,43,596 to the state exchequer within 15 days in his order dated October 31, 2011. However, the officials concerned have failed to deposit the amount even after six months.

Sources in Taluk Panchayat said “Taluk Panchayat had issued notices to two officials to deposit the misappropriated amount to the MGNRES account. However, the officials have failed to answer to the notice. We are planning to issue the notice once again.”

Soon after the incident, the Zilla Panchayat CEO had suspended PDO and Secretary and had decided to hold departmental inquiry against them. However, even before the departmental inquiry, the suspension order was revoked.

Now Chandrahas is serving as PDO of Sarapady Gram Panchayat and Maruthi Bandivaddar is serving as Grade-2 secretary at Mithabagilu Gram Panchayat.

Speaking to Deccan Herald, Taluk Panchayat EO Rohidas said “if the duo fail to deposit the amount, then we will start deducting the amount from their salary.”

Ombudsaman Sheena Shetty said “if the officials fail to deposit the amount, then there is scope for filing criminal case against such officials. The misapproparied amount should be credited even if the officials get retired from service and resigns the job.”

DYFI leader Rafeeq said that the DYFI had submitted a complaint to the Lokayukta on the misappropriation of funds under MGNREGS in Harekala.

Though the PDO and Secretary had agreed that there was misappropriation of funds before the Ombudsman during investigation, the duo had given wrong information to the Lokayukta officials.

DYFI Harekala unit president Rafeeq Harekala said “no action has been initiated against the offenders. Those who had filed complaint are being harassed. If the situation continues, then none will come forward to file complainat against the misappropriation,” he said.

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