By- Staff Correspondence
In a recent investigation, big scam is exposed under the PDS (Public Distribution System) scheme where the beneficiaries – the common people are being deprived of wheat at government fair price by owners of Roller Flour Mills of Jorhat.
Times of Assam has gathered exclusive footage of the dirty PDS Supply depots and the statement of agents of cooperative societies who have admitted to taking commission from roller flour mills of Jorhat. One such Mill Bajrang Bali Roller Flour Mill’s stamp was found in the government copy of the cooperative agent of Porbotia Gaon Panchayat who was forcefully given the commission against the quota of wheat meant for the public which is just one mere example to cite when the agent told,” many other cooperative agents like me receive such commission against the wheat especially in NR (Nawal Chand Ram Kishore) the trader of Bajrang Bali Flour Mill. It is because Assamese people don’t like the red wheat (Atta) which also has insects in it”.
These mills then processed the red wheat which after the refining/polishing is converted into white wheat. It is then repackaged and released in the market for the same customers at higher rates. Now the question is why have roller flour mills in such great number coming up in Jorhat day by day when the district population is about a million only. The answer lies in the high profit that the mill owners can make if he enters into a nexus with certain government officials in the PDS Supply scheme and upon green signal gets the same wheat from the agents of the cooperative societies who are generally semi literate person having nominal knowledge of government schemes. On the other hand the mill owners don’t even have to purchase wheat from private parties at higher rates thus ruining their profit business. Despite repeated persistence the owner Anjani Gattani of (NR and Bajrang Bali Flour Mill) was not available for a comment and kept away evading Times of Assam‘s questions.
Supply department Superintendent Mr. Ashok Borkotoky refused to divulge anything on the camera and insisted to contact the ADC who is in charge of the PDS scheme. When Times of Assam apprised the same, ADC Dhiren Hazarika promised to initiate an enquiry and find out any anomalies with the PDS scheme though didn’t get time to look after the proof which Times of Assam had brought along. It must be noted that Roller flour Mills have seen an unprecedented growth in residential areas like clusters throughout the city in places like Kendugiri, Cinnamora, Lichubari and Charigaon area while two three coming up right in the heart of the city.
Time alone will prove what prompt action did the government take but the ordinary public will keep suffering in the wake of the exploitation unleashed by these traders and mill owners at a time when the common man is reeling under a severe wave of recession.