Pune municipal commissioner disqualifies 672 bogus staffers recruited by newly-merged gram panchayats

Published on Oct 21, 2022 12:31 AM IST

The termination orders from municipal commissioner Vikram Kumar came after divisional commissioner Saurabh Rao submitted the enquiry report to the PMC

After the merger of 23 new villages with the PMC, a number of recruitments were carried out at the lower level, right from office peons to clerks at the local gram panchayat level wherein citizens alleged the exchange of large sums of money and bribery to obtain these jobs. (Representative Photo)
After the merger of 23 new villages with the PMC, a number of recruitments were carried out at the lower level, right from office peons to clerks at the local gram panchayat level wherein citizens alleged the exchange of large sums of money and bribery to obtain these jobs. (Representative Photo)
ByNadeem Inamdar

The Pune municipal commissioner has disqualified 672 persons who had sought employment with the PMC after their villages merged with the civic body. The government found the recruitment of these persons to be bogus and fraudulent, and ordered their immediate disqualification from municipal service. The termination orders from municipal commissioner Vikram Kumar came after divisional commissioner Saurabh Rao submitted the enquiry report to the PMC.

After the merger of 23 new villages with the PMC, a number of recruitments were carried out at the lower level, right from office peons to clerks at the local gram panchayat level wherein citizens alleged the exchange of large sums of money and bribery to obtain these jobs. Following a public outcry, PMC commissioner Kumar sought details of the zilla parishad (ZP) staffers after which Rao ordered an enquiry under ZP chief executive officer (CEO) Ayush Prasad, which was then submitted to the divisional commissionerate. Preliminary investigation by the district administration revealed that most of these recruitments were doubtful as they took place two to three months before the merger, and the names of some of the employees were found to be registered under the respective gram panchayats.

The enquiry report containing the names of all such ‘doubtful’ employees was submitted to the PMC for further action, with a copy submitted to the rural development and Panchayati Raj department. Administrative action was taken in the Pune ZP, and departmental enquiry hearings were held at the divisional commissioner’s office, as per laid-down procedures.

Deputy commissioner (general administration) Sachin Ithape said, “After publication of the notification of merger, the gram panchayats had conducted the recruitment which came under the radar of the administration. The divisional commissioner ordered an enquiry and several anomalies and violations were detected in the recruitment after which we decided to disqualify 672 staffers as per the law.”

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The ZP charge-sheeted 22 officials involved, and issued notices to 212 former Panchayati Raj-elected members from the concerned villages.

The ZP took action after submission of the report by the enquiry committee appointed to investigate allegations of improper recruitment of staff members to 23 gram panchayats, just before the villages were included in the PMC limits.

In December 2020, the state government issued a draft notification for the merger of 23 villages into PMC limits after which, major recruitments were carried out in the gram panchayats.

In seven gram panchayats, the enquiry committee found that the gram sevaks had recruited their own sons.

The family members of the elected representatives had also found place in the recruitment list.

Different methods were adopted to hide the salary payment records of these staffers.

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Mhalunge, Sus, Bavdhan budruk, Kirkatwadi, Pisoli, Kondhwe-Dhawade, New Kopre, Nanded, Khadakwasla, Manjari budruk, Narhe, Mantarwadi, Holkarwadi, Autade-Handewadi, Wadachiwadi, Shewalewadi, Nandoshi, Mangdewadi, Bhilarewadi, Gujar Nimbalkarwadi, Jambhulwadi, Kolewadi and Wagholi

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