By- Staff Correspondence, Jorhat
A sudden operation jointly conducted by Times of Assam and an independent news channel in the office of the Assistant Executive Engineer, Jorhat Irrigation Sub- Division, has resulted in a show of complete 0% attendance of departmental staff starting from the peon to the SDO (Sub Divisional Officer), Mr. Pabitra Ingti at 12, November 20, 2013.
A complete analysis of the office room show each table and chair vacant which if seen from a far distance would make one aware that the office might be buzzing with daily governmental work. Besides a dark store room of the office had collection of costly foreign liquor bottles and playing cards. The bottles which were empty were no doubt gulped by the SDO Pabitra Ingti as they belonged to costly brands which otherwise could not have been afforded by the lower clerical staff of the irrigation department. The office in short might be a gossiping day or night club of certain well paid government servants as they don’t know what to do as office paper works in the absence of government schemes to help the poor farmers of the state.
Trying to contact the SDO who was supposedly travelling to Guwahati at the time of the call turned out to be a hoax when one office head assistant informed us that the SDO was on a visit to a site near Titabor. But when the news team contacted Ingti over phone, Pabitra Ingti confided in secrecy while requesting a general pardon as he was travelling to Guwahati on the pretext of an official visit. God knows who was telling the truth, since both the head assistant and the SDO had different versions. Nevertheless when the SDO himself informed about travelling by the Janasatabdi express, it was not quite apparent about his travel by train since even after talking for almost 30 minutes, the entire news team could not hear the trains whistle, rumbling sound of the wheels or the gust of wind that affects communications on the phone besides the general talk of the passengers on the train.
It is in this way how certain departments especially the irrigation department in Assam functions. A hefty government salary and the lucrative offerings by contractors simply make them the very best in their field of exploitation, siphoning government funds allotted for the farmers under various irrigation projects.
More on this irrigation department of Jorhat in coming days with a special reporting on a scam involving several crores of rupees which Times of Assam is investigating from all angles based on public complain.