Jajpur: The people of Jajpur district have alleged that Rs 1.52 crore meant for repairing pipelines and water supply projects damaged by Cyclone Titli was embezzled by officials of Rural Water Supply and Sanitation (RWSS).
They said with the indirect support of officers, the department engineers embezzled Rs 1.5 crore sanctioned by producing fake vouchers as no construction work was carried out in the district.
Sources said department engineers produced a utilization certificate worth Rs 1.5 crore in which they gave a detailed projection of the water supply project work undertaken by the department.
But when reporters probed the matter it came to light that no damage had happened to water supply projects during Cyclone Titli.
From this it is clear that the entire fund sanctioned by the government for repairing water supply pipelines had gone into the pockets of babus.
Cyclone Titli hit Odisha October 11, 2017. According to the District Emergency Department sources, agricultural lands in Jajpur city, Darpan and Bayasanagar were affected by Titli in the district.
But making use of Titli the officials and authorities of RWSS produced a fake damage assessment report claiming that 104 water supply pipelines were damaged and submitted it to higher-ups.
The officials demanded Rs 2.5 crore for reconstruction of the water supply projects. The Collector also accepted the report on the basis of which the government had sanctioned Rs 1.5 crore.
In the utilization certificate the department officials said the entire sanctioned money was utilized for repairing the pipelines, construction of stand post, extraction of pipelines and painting of water supply projects in the blocks of Binjharpur, Koreai amd Dharmasala.
Cyclone Titli affected Ganjam and Gajapati districts mostly. Minor damage occurred in Jajpur district as per the Indian Metrological Department.
When RWSS Department’s Executive Engineer Amiya Kumar Parija was asked about this he said, “We will take action after the inspection report comes.”