Embezzlement surfaces in BDO Office Bhoond

A Bowli in worst condition. —Excelsior/Pardeep
A Bowli in worst condition. —Excelsior/Pardeep

Money withdrawn without execution of work

Excelsior Correspondent

KATHUA, June 2: Embezzlement of Government funds under MGNREGA scheme has come to the fore in village Badadi in Panchayat Hut of Block Bhoond in Kathua district.
As per sources, the Block Development Office (BDO) Bhoond has withdrawn Rs 19,000 for construction of Bowli and bathroom and shown the payment has been made under the scheme to laborers in village Badadi while on the ground no work has been done. Besides in the records the department has shown utilization of 40 bags of cement and other construction material on the work
When villagers came to know about the withdrawal of money for construction of a Bowli with bathroom while no work was done on ground by the Block Development Office Bhoond, they raised a hue and cry.
The amount has been withdrawn by BDO Office Bhoond and all the transactions have been recorded and displayed on Government website from 17 February to 23 February this year without the knowledge of BDC Chairman, Naib Sarpanch, Sarpanch or any Panchayat member or the villagers. The Bowli and bathroom was constructed on papers are seen to be in worse condition on the ground and not even a single penny was spend on repair of it. The villagers are so far dependent on this Bowli which is in worst condition said Naib Sarpanch, Narinder Kumar and Ashok Kumar , Panchayat member of WNo 6, Hut Panchayat.
The residents of the village who feel cheated by the officials of the block assembled near the Bowli and raised a strong protest against the authorities. They alleged that the funds were embezzled by the Rural Development Department.
They said that when new BDO Bhoond took charge of office and he came to know about the funds were withdrawn on the name of Bowli and bathroom. The website printout shows the construction of Bowli with bathrooms and withdrawal of Rs 19000 under MGNREGA for payment of laborers, issuing of 40 bag cement and other expenditure. The Panchayat members were surprised to know about embezzlement of funds under their nose. They immediately raised protest and demanded judicial inquiry into the matter.
They also disclosed that then BDO and Gramsewak cheated the villagers on the name of development and demanded investigation be made in other development works constructed by RDD.
When contacted Deputy Commissioner, Kathua, OP Bhagat said that the matter has been brought into his notice and has directed the Assistant Director Rural Development to visit on the spot and submit the report immediately.
The ADC RDD, Kathua N D Sharma said that he has deputed a team of officials for investigation to the area and they will submit their report within days following which the action against the persons responsible will be initiated under law. The team is headed by BDO N K Chandan.