Salary funds of council diverted

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By Samsul Alam
  • Published 19.05.18

Haflong: Funds meant for disbursing salaries of North Cachar Hills Autonomous Council's employees have been used for infrastructure development, according to a response to an RTI application by the principal secretary of the council.

The council's employees are not getting salaries since August 2017.

On April 9, the employees' union sought details from the council authorities under the RTI Act about utilisation of the one-time special grant.

The principal secretary of the council said as per direction of chief executive member Debolal Gorlosa, Rs 10 crore have been diverted from the special grant for utilisation in infrastructure development.

In March, the Assam government had sanctioned Rs 25 crore for the council as a one-time special grant for payment of pending salaries of the council's staff.

"A one-time special grant by the Assam government raised hopes of the employees that they will get at least a few months' salaries, but the council authorities have used only Rs 12.5 crore for payment of salaries and Rs 10 crore was diverted for infrastructure development which is totally illegal," the president of the employees' union, Joymendra Thaosen, said.

On Friday, the employees' union of the council submitted a memorandum to the DoNER ministry in Vigyan Bhawan Annexe, New Delhi, through the deputy commissioner of Dima Hasao district, requesting zero tolerance against any type of corruption by council's functionaries and ensure regular salaries of its employees.

The union alleged that the council is not at all interested in payment of salaries. They added that the council's employees have no "fundamental rights" as enjoyed by employees of other autonomous councils in the state.

Gorlosa could not be contacted as he is out of station.

Around Rs 65 crore is required every year to pay salaries of 2,500 employees of the council. The earning of the council is around Rs 25 crore.

Sources said bulk appointments without considering the financial implications have led to the present situation.

Salaries were paid regularly till September 2009 by diverting development funds. However, after the state government banned it payment of salaries has become a problem.

The employees have been agitating for long, demanding salaries but without success.