The Department of Rural Development and Panchayati Raj has called for Regular Departmental Action (RDA) against the Block Development Officer, a Jammu and Kashmir Administrative Service (KAS) officer, three Panchayat Inspectors and one Panchayat Secretary for misusing funds and violating guidelines of the Centrally Sponsored Scheme.
The Inquiry Officer has been given a time period of 15 days to submit report and recommendations to the Government in order to initiate action against all the involved officials.
The Anti-Corruption Bureau (which was formerly called State Vigilance Organization) received complaints regarding the withdrawal of money on the basis of fake bills by the officials in Bandipora district in Kashmir valley. So, they looked into the matter of misappropriation of funds provided for the developmental activities. When investigations were carried in 2017, it was revealed that accused officials assisted many undeserving beneficiaries under Indira Awas Yojana (IAY) by misuse of their official position and defied rules and even withdrawn bills on fake bills.
The Vigilance Organization found that Abdul Qayoom Sheikh, the then BDO Hajin, who later joined Jammu and Kashmir Administrative Service (KAS), Abdul Rashid Margoo, Abdul Jabbar, Nazir Ahmed Khan, the then Panchayat Inspectors and Ghulam Rasool Mir, the then Panchayat Secretary were found to be indulged in this act. The Anti-Corruption Bureau sent a copy of charges against these officials after which, the Department of Rural Development and Panchayati Raj decided to conduct a fresh enquiry.
The Divisional Vigilance Officer (DVO) in the Directorate of Rural Development Kashmir is appointed as Inquiry Officer for conducting fresh inquiry against the accused officials for misuse of funds which were meant for development activities. Assistant Commissioner Development Bandipora will act as Presenting Officer who will have the responsibility to present the case along with the relevant documents to the Inquiry Officer.
Sheetal Nanda, Secretary to the Government, Department of Rural Development and Panchayati Raj issued order that the Inquiry Officer is expected to conclude the enquiry and submit his report along with specific recommendations to the Government within a time period of 15 days.
There have been complaints that any disciplinary action taken by the General Administration Department against then BDO, who has joined KAS Service, is not in the public domain even though the Vigilance Organization detected misappropriation of funds in the month of August 2017. Delay in such matters motivates corrupt officials to go on with their daily job of grabbing money through illegal means.