Embezzlement of nearly Rs 21 lakh detected in Reasi Municipal Committee

Mohinder Verma
JAMMU, June 18: An embezzlement of about Rs 21 lakh has been detected in the Municipal Committee Reasi and taking serious note of the gross financial irregularity Deputy Commissioner Reasi, Dr Shahid Iqbal Choudhary today ordered enquiry by a three-member committee.
Official sources told the EXCELSIOR that after ascertaining development related demands of the people in different public meetings, the Deputy Commissioner last month issued orders for assessing the funds available with the Municipal Committee Reasi so that developmental works in 13 wards of the town could be taken up on priority.
While ascertaining the financial position of the Municipal Committee, Executive Officer noticed misappropriation of huge public funds. Accordingly, vide letter No.MC/R/2013-14/311-13 dated June 14, 2013 the Executive Officer informed the Deputy Commissioner, who is also Administrator of the Municipal Committee Reasi that Chuni Lal, Senior Assistant has embezzled more than Rs 20 lakh.
“The Senior Assistant collected the rent of shops etc against seven number of GR books in 2009-10, which has been calculated at Rs 9,98,719. Out of this amount he deposited only Rs 4,99,680 in the Municipal Committee office and the balance amount of Rs 4,99,039 is still lying with him”, the Executive Officer informed the Deputy Commissioner.
The Deputy Commissioner was also informed that the Senior Assistant even allotted strips of land to the shopkeepers at different locations and issued GR receipts against two GR books, which have not been entered in record of the Municipal Committee, sources further said.
“The Senior Assistant didn’t hand over the record to the Executive Officer Municipal Committee either on his taking over or thereafter and the amount calculated on two GR books is reported to be Rs 15,96,875 thereby making the total outstanding against the official to the tune of Rs 20,95,914”, sources said quoting the communication of Executive Officer.
When the scrutiny of the records of the Municipal Committee was going on, the Senior Assistant, finding himself in the trouble, managed his transfer, sources said, adding presently he is posted in the Municipal Committee Katra.
However, taking serious note of the embezzlement of money and gross financial irregularities, the Deputy Commissioner has ordered thorough enquiry into the misappropriation of public money before initiating legal action against the accused official and recovery proceedings, sources said. “The detailed enquiry is also imperative as the possibility of some other officials having been hand-in glove with the Senior Assistant cannot be ruled out”, sources added.
The enquiry will be conducted by a three member committee comprising Sudershan Kumar, Chief Executive Officer, Katra Development Authority, Mohd Arshad Choudhary, District Treasury Officer, Reasi and Rajesh Gupta, Executive Engineer PMGSY Reasi.
The Executive Officer Municipal Committee Reasi, Thakur Dass will be presenting officer in the case and the committee has been directed to submit its report by or before June 30, 2013. The Deputy Commissioner has directed the accused Senior Assistant Chuni Lal to remain present during the course of enquiry without fail following which further action as warranted under law would be taken against him.

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