Lacunas in Direct Benefit Transfer scheme
Shiv Kumar Padha
In order to ensure that the benefits of the welfare schemes of the governments reach up to the targeted population, without any pilferage at any stage, the visionary Prime Minister introduced a fool proof system of transferring the monetary benefits direct to the accounts of the beneficiaries. This scheme of payments is highly applauded throughout the country. But hats off to some departments, having public dealing and money involvement, devised an alternative system where they could kill two birds with one stone i.e. comply with the system as well as take the bribe from below the table in advance. Unlike the Prime Minister’s popular Kissan Samman Nidhi Yojna, where three installments of Rs 2,000 each is transferred direct to the accounts of crores Kissan beneficiaries every year with a click of the button, some departments in the J&K UT transfer the amount, of monetary benefits or the compensations, to the accounts of only those who make advance payments equal to the fixed percentage of the total amount of the benefit or compensation payable to them. The formulae ‘first come first served prevails in such departments. The readers will be surprised to know that in some Panchayats of the UT the money is transferred into the accounts of the fake beneficiaries of MNREGA scheme without bringing in their knowledge of the account holders in advance which, later on, is forcibly recovered from the gullible villagers. Under Panchayat Raj rules approval of the site plan from the Sarpanch along with the verification of the land and NOC from the BDO office has been made obligatory for every person constructing his residential house. It is seen that in majority of cases the poor villagers have to pay a heavy amount, as a bribe, to the employees of the concerned agency and the departments. It is worthwhile to mention here that a considerable amount is also charged from the beneficiaries of Kissan Samman Nidhi yojna before submitting their cases finally to the concerned quarters. It must be kept in mind by all the citizens that the Objective of every scheme of the popular government is aimed at the welfare of its people but some corrupt elements in departments mint money brazenly and with impunity. In order to curb such criminal mentality of the corrupt officers/employees the payments to all such beneficiaries must be made, like in the Kissan Samman Nidhi Yojna programe, with one click of the button simultaneously. The ACB and the vigilance departments should identify such elements, tighten noose around them and put them behind bars. The money from the state coffers must go in the pockets of its justified claimants otherwise no welfare scheme what so ever, can improve the economic condition of its citizens.