N Corpn vigilance dept has no teeth

Fails to dispose of long pending cases

The vigilance department of the North Delhi Municipal Corporation faced heavy criticism on Monday with councillors alleging that the department has almost become defunct and has failed to serve its purpose.

According to councillors, though proper functioning of the department is crucial for overall functioning of the corporation, the department has failed to discharge its duties.

Since the vigilance department has not disposed of complaints, those who are facing serious charges continue to hold key posts.

“Most of the cases before the department are pending for years. It has to monitor several things, like unauthorised construction, encroachment, functioning of midday meal scheme, irregularities in installation of hoardings and advertisements, among others,” said Mahendra Nagpal in the special House meeting called by the North Corporation over the issue.

“But the department has failed to discharge its duties,” he said. “The department is also required to monitor postings of officials on sensitive slots. But officers who are facing charges and major complaints continue to hold key posts.”

269 cases pending

According to corporation officers, 269 cases are pending before the vigilance department of the North Corporation.

Councillors alleged that corporation officers shield those who are facing vigilance department inquiry by initiating regular departmental action (RDA).

“The councillors raise issues of irregularities on several occasions in the House as well as with the standing committee. But the department has not taken any suo motu action
on even a single occasion,” said BJP councillor Sobha Vijendra.

“It reflects badly on how the department functions. Even when written proof is provided to the department, the result is zero,” said Vijendra.

Councillors said the department has not taken action although the number of complaints against officers has increased in the past few months.

While 5,909 complaints were registered between April 1 and December 31, 2012 a total of 676 cases have been recorded in the first two months this year.

North Delhi Municipal Corporation commissioner P K Gupta said the delay in pending cases is due to the long process involved and staff crunch in the corporation.

“Forty cases of regular departmental action have been disposed of in the past 10 months. The procedure involved is one of major reasons, apart from staff crunch,” said Gupta.

“The total sanctioned post of junior engineer in the corporation is 323, but only 151 are available. Of these, some 50 are facing RDA. We can’t remove them due to staff crunch,” added Gupta.

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