Multi crore scam in JAKEDA

Pained as we are, to write about our State continuing to reel under massive corruption and corrupt practices, among other reasons we have consistently been critical of the top administrative machinery in not showing a stern and resolute response against acts of corruption, mal- practices, irregularities and embezzlements indulged in by a few dishonest Government employees. It is shocking and perhaps unheard of that instances come into our notice as also the vigilant public, where even FIRs are lodged by the Anti Corruption Bureau , still the guilty continue to be not only unscathed and allowed to remain in service drawing salaries and enjoying associated “luxuries” of a State Government employee but they are , in most of the cases “rewarded” with plum postings . With this prelude, we wish to know from the State Government , especially the administration under the Governor, as to what steps have been taken in connection with multi crore (of Rupees) scam in Jammu and Kashmir Energy Development Agency (JAKEDA) in respect of works for supplying , installation and commissioning of roof top solar power plants . A whooping amount of Rs.155 crore is involved which should cause sleepless nights to the concerned higher authorities.
Were such daring illegal steps taken to amass money by adopting the modus operandi of manipulating tendering process? Did no one in the Department itself or the higher authorities get any inkling about allotting works to ten firms without any tenders for a whooping amount of Rs.155 crore while other 14 firms who qualified in the process of tendering, allotted works just for Rs.42.35 crore? Was it thought to a “free for all ” in resorting to glaring mal-practices simply because the scheme is sponsored by the Ministry of New and Renewable Energy (MNRE), Government of India and funds come from the Central Government under National Solar Mission for J&K State without any hassles? The flagship scheme of promoting solar power seems to have been attempted to promoting personal pecuniary power and considerations by the concerned employees who, perhaps, know that the system , though otherwise armed with sufficient tools of laws and regulations to fight such looting culture , would not act at all and in case it acted , it would be a long drawn process of inquiries, indictments , appellate appeals and deferred and lethargic follow up resulting ultimately in no punishments. Would Governor’s administration prove this wrong by arranging sharing of data about how many tainted and indicted corrupt employees were sent to jail during the last two years and how in the instant case , the administration was going to act swiftly.
Government of India extends on parity all such schemes to all the States and Jammu and Kashmir not only also gets the benefits of such schemes but at times, more funds are allotted to it as it carries the tag of “economically backward” State for obtaining financial assistance but if the benefits of such schemes do not reach the targeted and eligible pockets of the society , not only are the purposes of such schemes defeated but a feeling of dissatisfaction too gets nursed by the people. Most of them not only in soliloquies but openly blame those in charge of implementation of such schemes for having denied to them the benefits and having instead, indulged in massive corruption.
The Union Ministry having embarked upon achieving a target of 1150 MW solar power in Jammu and Kashmir with a spread over of seven years from 2015-16 to 2021-22 has met with a scam of this nature which has not only dampened the spirit of the scheme but added one more brazen instance to the long list of irregular and corrupt practices already reported while others surfacing unabatedly in various State departments which all contribute to calling Jammu and Kashmir State as one of the most corrupt States. In the instant case, rules and procedures have been ruthlessly sidelined and set guidelines have wilfully been flouted in not obtaining any concurrence of any sort from the State Planning or Finance Departments prior to allotments of most of the works under the scheme. We would strongly urge the Government to take appropriate and befitting action in the matter at an early date.