Widow reveals government sponsored cheating
The story of a widow and mother of two children, Pratima Hazarika,wife of late Haren Hazarika, who had been serving as an MR worker in the Dhansri Irrigation Office, Bhairabkunda, has revealed live examples of non utilization of public money.It has also revealed how anti social elements with direct patronage of the government officials have been cheating innocent villagers. According to the widow, an original resident of village Bagichachuba, in the district of Udalguri, she was granted an amount of Rs.10,000 as widow pension in 2008 after the death of her husband.The concerned officials did not care to inform her of the pension; rather they just wanted to eat up the amount themselves. When (though late)she had gone to BDO’s office, Kalaigaon in July 2008 to collect the cheque, Upen Deka,an employee of Kalaigaon Bolck Dev. office told her that the cheque had already been issued to her. The poor widow was surprised when she knew that the amount too had been withdrawn from the SB account of the bank, (which was opened in her name). The villagers of her original residence informed her that government Gaonbuirah of Bagichachuba, Purna Baro and his wife had identified Anima Baro, another woman as Pratima Hazarika at the BDO’s office, collected the cheque successfully, opened bank SB accounts and withdrew the whole amount,
In the mean time the imposter lady,Anima Baro got angry with the Gaonburah (when she was paid an amount of Rs.150 only) and revealed the matter to the villagers in a public meeting.On the otherhand when Pratima Hazarika met the Gaonburah, he demanded Rs.5000 as bribe from her. Finding no way, Pratima Hazarika filed a petition to the Circle Officer, Kalaigaon seeking justice.
The incident has raised several issues. Firstly how could the cheque be issued to an imposter? Secondly, why did the bank authority did not verify the identity of the imposter? But the most urgent task now is to do justice to the widow and to punish the culprits.
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