An appeal to Prime Minister Narendra Modi -

Grass roots corruption is nullifying your development agenda; literally throwing down the drain thousands of crores of public funds collected by Arun Jaitly from ‘middle class’

 

 

Preamble

 

In your speech at the BJP Headquarters in Delhi post your grand victory in 2017 UP Assembly Elections you talked about how the middle class has to bear the burden of pain of eliminating poverty. You also suggested that they should not mind it since by creating an enabling environment for the nation’s poor that pain will finally ease. Your noble sentiments were so touching.

 

The Indian middle class provides bulk of employment to labor in the unorganized sector, feeds your corrupt and inefficient bureaucracy, and of course looks after the upkeep of the political class. It will happily pay a little more to eliminate poverty to ensure an end to the misery of humanity. Crores of middle-class nationalists gave up their gas subsidies on your call and you never tire of showing your gratitude to them through expensive unreadable advertisements in the Main Stream media (MSM), again paid for by the same middle-class. 

These ads fund MSM, which incinerates you day after day with its fake reports, and help maintain the lifestyle of the Lutyen’s Zone elite that still has greater access if not to you, then to the babus in the Ministry of Information & Broadcasting. Please check out this link to understand what I’m talking about.  http://www.khullamkhulla.net/who_funds_ie.html

Grassroots corruption, your development agenda & what happens to those thousands of crores given to you by middle-class Indians

 

While you announce and tweet proudly about thousands of crores earmarked for your government’s pro-poor, pro-farmer, and pro-people initiatives, you don’t probably know what finally happens with that money at the point of execution. Nearly 3 years of your government have gone by and people are still waiting to take a bite at the fruit of development. They don’t see a visible change. 

 

They do see a lot of money being spent on construction of roads, railway platforms, toilets, etc., but they don’t see better roads, better platforms, significantly better developed, maintained, and managed public utilities and services. They also see a lot of their money being thrown down the drain due to lack of integrated planning and execution of central government projects and schemes.

 

No asset creation but continuing loot

 

In your various speeches in the Parliament you highlighted the fact that the money spent on the Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment Guarantee Act (MGNREGA), which was spent in digging and filling useless holes, would now be used for ‘Asset Creation’. You also mentioned about how corruption in NRGEA will be checked and eliminated by using the Direct Benefit Transfer (DBT) process of payment. Subsequently NREGA funds were dovetailed with rural infra projects like the Pradhan Mantri Gram Sadak Yojana (PMGSY) and Swacch Bharat Mission (SBM) of toilet construction in rural areas.

 

The reality is assets are being created more on paper than on ground. And whatever assets are shown to be created in records, thousands of miles of rural roads being built at the rate of 134 kilometers per day, will be washed out during next floods. They won’t last even a year. They are not made to last. They are made to make money through a proven and not so complicated web of corruption that involves bureaucrats, engineers, and gram pradhans.

 

And you will be surprised to know that DBT has not stopped corruption even a wee bit. Instead of paying cash to fake workers, the money now goes into the accounts of fake workers and lackeys of the Gram Pradhan who takes it out, pays the cut to the babus,  supervising engineers, and all approving government entities, and pockets the major chunk. The cut of Gram Pradhans, supervising engineers, and babus in these projects varies from 30 to 50%. This simply means none of these rural roads will last beyond the first shower during the rainy season. They are so poorly planned and constructed, with no room for water to drain out. Here is a tell-tale picture of a rural road. Show it to any expert and he will tell you that it’s anything but ‘Asset Creation’. 

 

 

Another of your flagship programme of toilet construction under Swacch Bharat Mission (SBM) has met the same fate. It’s a programme to enrich Gram Pradhans and babus and not to help the rural poor to have a better and cleaner lifestyle. SBM is ill conceived, and terribly planned and executed. You will be surprised to learn that Gram Pradhans have shown already constructed toilets in the households of their cronies as newly constructed toilets and pocketed the bulk of government grant under the scheme. The toilets constructed in most cases are unusable and are hellholes and a major cause for spreading infections.

 

Here is a link to a report that tells you about the ground realities of SBM initiative.

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/indiahome/indianews/article-3196966/Modi-s-Swachh-Bharat-mission-built-80-lakh-new-toilets-people-using-them.html

 

How can you stop this?

  1. You should begin with making a few unplanned visits to rural areas or creating a task force of investigators and data collectors to generate solid intelligence and evidence of how your schemes are being executed on ground. Within a few months the harsh and depressing reality will be staring in your face.
  2. Warn Gram Pradhans, babus, and supervising engineers that they are public servants and thus their conduct is open to investigation by Lok Aayukt and CBI in case Central Govt. funds are involved. This will send a signal to the corrupt that they will not be spared. Investigate and have a few of these corrupt Gram Pradhans and babus arrested and prosecuted by a special court.
  3. Begin an intensive audit of the work done so far under these schemes. Involve CAG in the process. CAG has begun to unearth the false claims of babus in various ministries and expose misuse and abuse of funds.

You must ensure your rural housing loan schemes don’t fail in asset creation because of grass-roots corruption

 

That will be a terrible burden on the exchequer and banks involved in the process, leading to a situation where lakhs of crores of bad loans and NPAs will create havoc with the nation’s financial structure. Gram Pradhans and babus have already tasted blood. They are already asking rural folk seeking grants and loans under rural housing projects supported by state governments and GOI for 10 to 20% cut of the sanctioned amount. That means the scheme will not reach the needy but the greedy gang will run away with the money. Loans will never be repaid and will have to be written off finally since no government will have guts and gumption to go for a painful recovery process. 

 

The biggest pain of middle class is to see its precious money squandered by corrupt and visionless bureaucracy and politicians

 

It can see what’s happening on-ground and how mercilessly its hard-earned money is taken away and thrown down the drain. This was happening during the UPA regime and in the last three years there has not been an iota of change in the ground situation. We see you working 18 hours a day but don’t understand what you are doing in those 18 hours apart from attending meetings, speaking in public rallies and seminars, signing treaties with foreign dignitaries, sanctioning lakhs and crores for your flagship programmes, talking incessantly about the ease of doing business, and tomtomming data about the fast pace of development since your arrival.

 

What we see on ground are poorly planned and constructed roads, railway platforms and their dirty toilets, unconcerned babus, rampant corruption at the grass-roots, waste of public money on useless advertisements released by DAVP in newspapers with negligible readership, and a whole lot of ceremonies and seminars instead of solid and viable asset creation.

 

‘500 Meters Walk Challenge’

 

This is just the tiny tip of the iceberg. If I begin to talk about urban planning and infrastructure development and the criminal waste of resources going on there, you will resign and retire to the Himalayas. In fact I asked Shri Venkaiah Naidu, your Urban Development Minister, through my tweets to participate in a ‘500 Meters Walk Challenge’. Though he has a lot of time for useless seminars, he does not have time for the ‘500MWC’. It entails a 500 meters walk in urban or rural stretch of your choosing, anywhere beyond the well-manicured Lutyen’s Zone. The objective is to show you the humongous failure in the area of rural or urban infrastructure planning and development after the British left our shores.

 

I also request you to take this 500 Meters Walk Challenge in the Parliamentary constituency of your most favorite ministers and your own, and you will see how nothing significant has changed for the middle class or the poor of this country since your arrival on the national scene.

 

Please check this video out of my 500 Meters Walk around Mumbai's Juhu area made more than a year ago. Nothing much has changed since then in spite of sending this link to many including you.

 

 

It’s all right Modi Ji to be optimistic and look at that part of the glass that’s full.  You also saw an opportunity to fill up the empty spacein the glass that was not full. Your ministers and babus in spite of you putting in 18 hours of hard labor squander that opportunity. It’s time for you to evaluate how productive is your sleepless schedule in terms of grassroots delivery.

 

Even I cannot sleep more than four to five hours in a day, worried to hell if you can really achieve a demonstrable goal in the remaining two years of your government after having wasted three years listening to cock and bull stories of your incompetent ministers and inept babus and associates. Even your office, the PMO, is as inept and irresponsive as most of your ministries.

 

The nation cannot afford you to fail Pradhan Mantri Ji. You are the last hope of nationalists who want India, Bharat, to rise above squalor and filth and reassert its God-ordained mission in the comity of nations as enunciated by Swami Vivekananda.  

@khulkebolo @neelnabh

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