Change of guards! Poonch district witnessed the most unpleasant administration deficit on the ground; All eyes are on the new DC
POONCH TODAY NEWS
POONCH: Although reports of various foul plays against the institution of the Poonch administration remained in the limelight during the last twenty-five years, those foul plays never came into the public domain because of a large number of unprofessional people and “yes men” in the fourth estate.
In between, a few DCs were able to carve a niche for themselves through their meritorious performance and also won people’s appreciation, not the fake appreciation of the traditional “Guldasta Gang,” whose members only believe in grinding their own axes by forming links with civil and police officers. However, in the good governance index announced by the UT government of J&K last year, Poonch district remained in 20th position (last position), and even after that disgraceful performance, no concrete efforts were made to address the loopholes existing in the administrative setup by those sitting at the helm of affairs. Arrogance and a biassed approach remained heavy in the majority of administrative issues during the last two years from those sitting at the top offices. During this period, the majority of officials were seen giving negative feedback about the questionable workings of the top administration on one pretext or another. A tactical modus operandi was started by a few top officers in which many big projects known for “Malaidaar” output were given the green signal, which was in violation of various norms, with the help of several touts who were operating from different places in various departments. Encroachment on market space, encroachment on forest and government lands, and illegal capturing of irrigation canals and river beds at various places with the help of hand-in-glove relations between various parties and those sitting in the administration openly gave a big dent to the credibility of the administration in the eyes of the common man. Basic amenities of life, like power and a regular water supply, were not given to the people. Increased rates of various commodities were not checked properly, and as a result, the common man faced huge inconvenience. The concerned department officials used to visit markets once in a blue moon to collect their monthly share. The issue of land encroachment on Raja Sukhdev Singh Hospital was not addressed properly. Various encroachment scams at different places, including within the limits of the municipality of Poonch, were not taken to task by the administration. Allowing illegal stone crushers to operate freely by the administration, which belonged to influential people, while others were taken to task on illogical terms because owners of those crushers failed to settle for hand-in-glove activity with the concerned officers. On the ground, the presence of the administration on various issues was not felt by the common man, as locals alleged that there was total disorder in the administrative setup. Only in the files, the officers hoodwink everybody by saying that all the targets of different departments were achieved, but beneath the curtains, various foul plays were scripted. A large number of people are still without golden cards, but the administration gave awards to a few officials of the health department by giving the wrong feedback to the government that the 100% target was achieved. From various illegal acts at different places, a few officers of the administration reportedly got huge favours, and as a result, no action was taken against those involved in illegal acts in violation of various norms. Even some important revenue officials were pressurised from the top in some cases to give favourable reports in violation of rules. Some government employees also became leaders and media persons, and their open violation of government rules was even not checked by the police and civil administration, thereby raising question marks in the intelligence networks of the administration. The issue of brazen noise pollution from the loudspeakers was not touched by the administration, thereby forcing the people to suffer huge inconvenience, and it shows how the orders of the Hon’ble Supreme Court and other courts related to noise pollution were ignored. During the last one and a half decades, there was no administrative deficit to the extent that the people witnessed during the last two years. Only traditional sycophants (so-called prominent citizens) of the administration and “Guldasta gang” members, as per their past practise, were seen praising the administration. After the government announced the change of guards at various levels, a social media user wrote “Mukya sayapa,” and his reaction was a justification for the fact that the people of Poonch were not happy with the machinery of administration. Now, the district has a new IAS Deputy Commissioner, and it would be interesting to see how he handles the already low credibility of the Poonch administration in the eyes of the public. Earlier, a local IAS officer, Aijaz Asad, got the opportunity to serve in Poonch as Deputy Commissioner. After his joining, he immediately took some steps from the development point of view, eyeing a better future for the Poonch district, but his efforts were eclipsed by the same “Guldasta gang” members who started to build useless narratives of praise for him, but some shrewd political foxes brought this narrative issue into the notice of the then political government, which led to the premature transfer of Aijaz Asad from Poonch to Rajouri as DC. Later, Aijaz proved his mettle as DC Rajouri, and his ongoing tenure as DC Srinagar has also been appreciated by all, even by the union government. Now, going by the most unpleasant administrative deficit in Poonch and similar other issues, will the new DC also become a target of the “Guldasta Gang”, “self-styled leaders,” and “fake media persons,” or will he be able to prove his mettle through his performance on merit only by taking action against various violations of rules by employees or anybody else? All eyes are on the new deputy commissioner.