By: Vijay Samyal
Fatehpur: Irregularities in the working of Panchayati Raj institutions are not new, but delay in solving cases of favoritism and corruption that surface from time to time may harm the institution of grassroots democracy to a great extent. One particular case alleging irregularity in appointment of an aanganbadi worker in Malhanta village in Fatehpur constituency points in that direction as despite the complainant having taken up the issues with authorities more than two years ago, nothing much has emerged out of it.
Complainant Puja Devi of Malhanta village had alleged that another Puja Devi (Sima) from the same village had managed to get employment as an aanganbadi worker on the basis of forged documents in 2007. The complainant wrote to the social welfare department in Shimla besides local officials about the alleged fraud. The complainant had alleged that the said person had used her sister Seema’s certificates to get the job.
Acting on the complaint, ADM Kangra through a letter dated January 18, 2008, asked both the parties to appear at Fatehpur guest house on February 6, 2008, for settlement of the case. Nothing happened after that and nearly nine months later another letter was issued on November, 19, 2008, asking both the parties to appear before officials on November 22, 2008. After recording the statements, it took another nine months for the vigilance to probe the matter as again the statements of both the parties were recorded on August 14, 2009. But seeing no action six months after the vigilance officer visited their village, the complainant has not again written to all officials concerned and also the Chief Minister regarding the matter, hoping that at least the CM’s office would act on it. The letter was received by the CM’s office on January 23, 2010, but action on it is yet to follow.