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PDS on auction in Lakhipur sub–division: GSS

SILCHAR, January 30: Public Distribution System (PDS) in the sub–division of Lakhipur is virtually on auction. The people’s representatives are taking away the benefits of the system by creating a syndicate of political agents of ruling party and their henchmen. Under the very tutelage of stake officials, the allotments of rice for APL, BPL and Antodaya Anna Yojana (AAY) are being simply looted. The cooperative societies in hands and gloves with fair price shoppers are selling the rice, flour and kerosene oil in black markets. These allegations have been openly aired by Grahak Suraksha Samiti (GSS), Cachar.
Strangely enough, as Biplob Kumar Goswami, general secretary of the Samiti, said despite all the corruptions in PDS, the sub–divisional administration maintains a stoic silence. This clearly establishes the nexus of the administration with the syndicate. People in general assembled before the office of the SDO (Civil) on Thursday and held protest demonstration and later on brought out a strong rally under the banner of GSS. Speakers after speakers representing the deprived and discriminated PDS beneficiaries burst out in anger and anguish and gave telling pictures of the open loot of the PDS materials. They in unison hit out at the sub–divisional administration and questioned if it was in existence and functioning.
Around 3000 people from different parts of the sub–division joined the protest demonstration and the rally which went round the town of Lakhipur with banners and posters, highlighting their gross allegations. Biplob Kumar Goswami in his hard–hitting speech said for the last one year, 90% people have not been receiving APL rice. In order to hide the mischief of the syndicate, it has been propagated that the state government has stopped supply of APL rice. In view of the seriousness and magnitude of the open loot of essential commodities for the last 10 years, Goswami demanded CBI inquiry to expose the dark forces behind it.
Continuing his tirade against the administration and the ruling party, Biplob Kumar Goswami pointed out only 54% of target groups get BPL and AAY rice. The rice under the schemes is being supplied for 7 to 8 months in a year and not only that the consumers are also cheated in respect of price, weight and quantity. Even, kerosene oil meant for the common people under free market is sold for 3 to 4 months in a year. In this way, lakhs of litres of kerosene oil are black–marketed.
Biplob Kumar Goswami further said a section of influential leaders have in fact crippled the administration of Lakhipur. He described the sub–divisional civil supply department as a ‘paralysed and disabled’ establishment. The only way to stir it up is to go for unified and mass movement. He did not stop here. By exploiting the emotional issue of language and religion, the syndicate is confusing the voices of protest in order to weaken the movement. He cautioned all present at the rally and the demonstration against these unscrupulous elements.
Others who addressed the assembly included Sudhir Mirdha and Bimala Devi. They all used the harshest words to target the civil supply department and the administration. A memorandum addressed to the Chief Minister of Assam on the issues raised and resented against was handed over to the magistrate in–charge in the SDO office. The memorandum among others strongly demanded CBI investigation into the PDS of the sub–division. (Source: SentinelAssam)

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