‘SCAM!’: Landless residents shown beneficiaries by revenue officer in south Kashmir

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A revenue officer in Pulwama district has shown landless inhabitants as landholders in the PM Kisan scheme in lieu of bribes and caused huge losses to the scheme and got away without any official accountability.

Inhabitants told news agency Kashmir Dot Com (KDC) that Bashir Ahmad, Patwari, of Ratnipora halqa in Kakapora block in Pulwama district has included inhabitants who are not eligible under PM Kisan as some among them are members of the same family possessing the same land while others are landless owning no land at all.

Bashir Ahmad Patwari, of Ratnipora said that according to the list prepared by him there is no discrepancy of beneficiaries.

This illegal act of the Patwari has resulted in loss to the PM Kisan scheme and is turning out to be a major scam as locals said that the official included the names after taking bribes from them.

The scrutiny of the PM Kisan beneficiaries of Ratnipora halqa on the PM Kisan portal revealed the names of those inhabitants who do not own land while many beneficiaries are siblings owning the father’s land and shown as independent owners.

According to the guidelines of the scheme Small and Marginal Farmers (SMFs) are given Rs 6000 annually in three installments after every four months.

The guidelines say that SMFs landholder farmer family is the one which as “a family comprises husband, wife and minor children” who collectively own cultivable land upto 2 hectare as per land records of the concerned State/UT”.

However, the revenue official of the concerned halqa has included those people in the list which are not eligible for the financial benefit.

The inhabitants have demanded legal action against the Patwari by the District Commissioner who is the Nodal Officer of the PM Kisan scheme for violating the scheme guidelines and taking bribes from the residents.

A senior agricultural officer told Kashmir Dot Com that the revenue officials across the district have made major discrepancies including the said Patwari by showing false owners as landholders.

He said that the centre government has after unearthing a scam by revenue officials stopped sending financial assistance to the beneficiaries as of today only 3 lakh beneficiaries are being transferred the assistance into their Aadhaar linked bank accounts.

He said previously it was five lakh beneficiaries in Kashmir who would get assistance but due to a scam by revenue officials it was stopped for the illegal persons who were shown landholders.

The official said that the irony is that the revenue officials got away from legal action as the government didn’t probe the wrong acts of the Patwaris.

Pertinently, the previous district commissioner Raghav Langar had smelled a scam in the scheme after he found differences between Kisan Credit Card and PM – Kisan beneficiary database.

Langer had directed for the merger of the database of KCC holders and PM – Kisan beneficiaries when he had found a scam in the KCC account holders and PM – Kisan Samman Nidhi. (KDC)

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