Corruption In The Social Welfare Department Of Hailakandi during Lockdown; Demand for CID investigation
In Hailakandi district, there have been allegations of corruption in the name of child welfare in various ICDS projects under the Social Welfare Department, construction of government offices as contractors’ warehouses and transportation of baby food. Various organizations in the district, including the Anganwadi Workers Support Association, have demanded the CID investigation and sought the intervention of the Chief Minister.
Lala has built a warehouse inside the ICDS project office. Although every child in the Anganwadi Center is allowed to pay for the daily food transport expenses, the full caring allowance does not match the fate of the Anganwadi workers. As a result, there has been intense dissatisfaction among the Anganwadi workers’ assistants in Enye district. Allegedly, the departmental contractor named NGO has turned various offices including the saliva of the project into warehouses by exerting political power in the name of supplying baby food. He is also involved in corruption in the payment of transport expenses including fraud in the supply of baby food. And with this irregularity, various organizations including the Anganwadi Workers Support Organization of the district have become vocal in protest … Lala has already sought the intervention of the district deputy commissioner, demanding an investigation into the ICDS project’s anganwadi workers and support organizations.
On the other hand, various voluntary organizations have demanded CID investigation and sought the intervention of the Chief Minister of the state. Former district president of Hailakandi district BJP Govinda Lal Chatterjee’s allegation, Lala of social welfare department, irregularities and corruption in ICDS project drew the attention of the district magistrate, but no action was taken. He further alleged that there were widespread allegations of embezzlement of funds allocated for the daily food transport expenses of every child at the Anganwadi Center in Hailakandi district. He called for a high-level investigation into the incident.
According to the complaint, the Anganwadi workers were given transport allowance for carrying baby food and goods but the Anganwadi workers were not given full allowance. During the lockdown, according to the Anganwadi Center, the government provided food to 46,512 children aged six months to three years in Hailakandi district. In addition, there are about nineteen thousand pregnant and maternity women.
Accordingly, a total of 8,440 beneficiaries, including children and women, have been allocated Rs. 20 per person per day for transporting baby food. . But in reality, it has been alleged that Anganwadi workers are paid very little for TAR without paying transport allowance in proportion to their benefits. Not only that, there have been allegations of embezzling crores of rupees by supplying substandard baby food and supplies to various Anganwadi centers of various projects including Lala ICDS project in the district. In a memorandum given to Megh Nidhi Dahal Madhumita Gupta, secretary of the staff support organization, alleged that Lala, a departmental contractor, provided substandard materials to the ICDS project.
As a result, Anganwari workers have to be humiliated at different times by the common people in remote rural areas. Therefore, he requested the district deputy commissioner to form an inquiry committee to check the quality of baby food to check its quality. Madhumita Gupta said that after examining baby food according to government guidelines by other government department officials, it should be distributed. If so, corruption will be reduced. He demanded distribution from the godown of the divisional office to the staff after getting permission after inspection.
In the memorandum, the secretary of the Anganwari Workers’ Support Organization further complained that the Anganwari supervisors were supposed to visit the Anganwari centers in their respective areas and collect all the official information from the workers but they did not do so. During the reverse lockdown, Lala called the Anganwadi workers to the ICDS project office almost every day. As a result, it is very difficult for employees to travel during lockdown and they have to bear high cost.
Therefore, he made a special demand for the supervisors to collect official information from the Anganwari Center of the concerned area. Also the market price is much higher than the price list of the product issued by the department. As a result, Anganwari workers are suffering a lot of times. Apart from taking appropriate action in this regard, Madhumita Gupta demanded that the Lala ICDS project office be brought under the purview of CCTV as it is the office of Anganwari staff assistant, i.e. women’s office. At the same time, Anganwadi workers have to go door to door with the medical team to prevent corona virus infection.
Having to observe Therefore, he has strongly demanded the district magistrate to provide adequate preventive kits to the Anganwadi workers like the medical team. Meanwhile, the allegation of irregularities in the social welfare department in Hailakandi district has come to the notice of the Assam State Child Protection Commission. Ajay Dutt, a member of the Assam State Child Protection Commission, said the commission was investigating the allegations. Similarly, District Social Welfare Officer Jyotirmoy Daimari also said that the allegations are being investigated.