Patna, April 9: Vijay Kumar Yadav (37) spends Rs 350 every time he visits the state capital to lodge a complaint at the chief minister’s janata darbar held on Mondays.
The cycle mechanic from Vaishali had done so 20 times over the past four-and-a-half years and all he got were assurances from Nitish Kumar. Yadav’s complaint: wife Sangita Kumari, 32, is not being recruited in the anganwadi kendras.
Today, on his 21st visit, he again got an assurance from Nitish.
But Yadav is fed up.
The mechanic from Mahnar block (Lavapur Narayan panchayat) in Vaishali district, 40km northeast of Patna, alleges that the child development programme officer and block development officer have recruited people with fake certificates. His wife, Yadav alleges, has not been recruited in spite of having a genuine certificate.
Yadav today again placed his problem before the chief minister. The reply he got is the same that he has been hearing from Nitish and various officials manning the darbar. “Ok, I will ask the official to probe the matter,” said Nitish, sending the mechanic on his way back to his Vaishali home.
At the exit, Yadav narrated his ordeal to The Telegraph. “I made my first visit to the CM’s janata darbar on October 15, 2007, and since then I have been coming here and the last visit I made was on February 13, 2012. This is my 21st visit but still my request to probe the matter is pending,” he said.
“All I want is the government to probe the matter and I am ready to face whatever the results of the inquiry are. But every time I come here, the chief minister says he will ask the officer to probe the matter but nothing has happened so far.”
The chief minister told The Telegraph not to judge the darbar by stray cases. “Do not judge things on the basis of individual examples. Many people visit this darbar with several problems and we make sure that their grievances are heard properly. But many times we cannot do anything, like today itself a young boy started crying in front of me seeking a job. I cannot do that, there are certain issues which the government cannot solve,” he said.
“People come with family problems but it is our duty to solve them so sometimes we do counselling also. As far as your question is concerned, it not that we do not take these cases seriously. We do,” Nitish said.
Secretary to the chief minister, S. Siddharth, claimed that 90 per cent cases coming to the janata darbar are disposed of.
Yadav though doesn’t agree and displayed 20 stapled cards of the chief minister’s secretariat as proof of his futile missions to 1 Aney Marg. “I have failed to understand for what purpose the chief minister has started the system of janata darbar if he cannot solve the problems of the common man,” he said. “I have to think twice before coming here because every time I have to spend Rs 350 for attending the darbar.”
The mechanic gave details of the trouble he has to take to make the journey to Patna. “From Mahnar I have to walk three kilometres to reach a place called Jahrua where bus services are available. The bus takes me to Patna bus stand for a fare of Rs 120. From there I take an auto-rickshaw to reach 1 Aney Marg and have to shell out Rs 30. The return journey costs as much. Moreover, I have to pay Rs 50 to the typist who takes Rs 10 per page.”
“I am already in debt and earn just Rs 100 to Rs 120 per day. It is financially not possible for me to spend so much money on such things. Nitish is worried about corruption in India but what about the corruption in his own state where his officials are not listening to the problems of poor people,” Yadav said.
On December 14, 2011, The Telegraph had reported the plight of 73-year-old paddy grower from Gaya, Bishandeo Choudhary, who had made 27 visits to Nitish’s darbar over six years to seek redress for his motley problems, but in vain. Yadav is fast catching up on Choudhary.