THe GHMC toilet installed at a petrol bunk.
Hyderabad: The construction of toilets in Greater Hyderabad Municipal Corporation limits were steeped in corruption charges.
Beneficiaries and corporators alleged that several field level officers had demanded bribes and rejected their applications if the money was not paid. Till date, the corporation received 8,000 applications of which about 6,000 were rejected.
According to official data, the civic body received 8,083 individual household latrines (IHHL) applications under Swachh Bharat Mission.
The civic body rejected 5,936 of them. Not only residents but also ruling party corporators alleged that the field staff who were entrusted to monitor the allocation and construction of IHHL toilets did the sanctioning according to their will.
Each individual toilet would cost Rs 12,000 of which Rs 8,000 was to be borne by GHMC and the rest by the Central government.
A three-member committee comprising bill collector, assistant engineer and co-ordinator from urban community development would monitor the construction.
A ruling party corporator, who is also a standing committee member, said on condition of anonymity that the ground level staff had been demanding Rs 500 for allocating IHHL, `500 for release of phase I funds and Rs 500 for phase II funds. He said some field level staff had even demanded `5,000 for allocating IHHL. The issue was even taken to the notice of higher authorities in the GHMC but there had been no solution so far.
K. Laxmaiah (name changed on request) of Bojagutta said the corporation during April 2017 had sought applications for IHHL. He said that not only his, but those of several others also were rejected as bribes were not paid to field level officers.
“GHMC had only allocated IHHL for persons who were self-sufficient but not to the actual beneficiaries,” he said.
Corporation officials had demanded Rs 500 from each beneficiary to allocate IHHL, he added. A senior official admitted there were allegations against the field staff and the corporation would probe the issue and take stringent action.
About the rejection of IHHL applications, he said there several reasons and at times beneficiaries applied multiple times in the names of family members and there was no provision to allocate IHHL if an individual toilet was already there. However, GHMC official data said construction of 2,133 individual toilets had been completed when it was a mere 554 till May 2017.
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