Around 70 sarpanches of Mansa district were left red faced here on Saturday morning when they found that the district administration had invited them to attend a seminar on ‘water conservation’ which was actually organised by an NGO run by district BJP leaders.
HT found that the NGO World Human Rights Foundation (WHRF), which is headed by a local BJP leader had asked the assistance of deputy commissioner to hold a seminar for creating awareness over the recent decision of the state government to impose fine over misuse of potable water.
“We had asked the assistance of the deputy commissioner for creating awareness over the new ruling of the state government. We have invited even experts to speak on the benefits of conservation of potable water,”said Suraj Chabra, a BJP leader and one of the senior members of WHRF.
The village heads however alleged that while inviting them the officials of the district administration had conveyed that a meeting with deputy commissioner will be held where the issue of water conservation will be addressed. “The panchayat secretary had called us and said that the deputy commissioner is going to hold a meeting with the sarpanches. However, when we reached at the venue, the BJP leaders had hijacked the whole programme and deputy commissioner was nowhere to be seen,” said an agitated sarpanch.
The sarpanches walked out of the meeting and gheraoed the office of the deputy commissioner demanding that he should come and address the meeting. “How can a BJP leader occupy the chair of the esteemed deputy commissioner? It seems that the coalition partner of the ruling alliance is misusing the state machinery for their personal benefits,” said Gurlal Singh.
Later the deputy commissioner came and pacified the protesting sarpanches and apologised for the ‘’miscommunication’’ on the part of district administration.