13 Lakh Kg Rice Meant For Flood Victims Decays In Govt Godown

16 October 2015
Greater Kashmir
Mudasir Yaqoob

Srinagar: An embarrassed State government has assured stringent action against officials responsible for wasting 13 lakh kgs of rice meant for flood victims. An inquiry committee set up by the government to look into the issue has put responsibility of the decaying of food grains on then Director CAPD, Bilal Ahmad, and present Director, A R War. Talking to Greater Kashmir, CAPD Minister Chowdhary Zulfkar said that his office is examining the findings of inquiry committee. 'Strict action under law will be taken against officials irrespective of their rank and guilty won't be spared. We are governed by the rule of law and the law will decide the fate of guilty officials,' he assured. 'I have not received the copy of inquiry committee report yet. However, I have asked my office to go through the findings of the committee and recommend appropriate action under law. I will also read the report as the matter pertains to public interest.' The inquiry committee was set up after CAPD Minister visited Lethpora godown on July 11 this year and found the ration dumped there in a deteriorated condition which otherwise was meant for free distribution among floods victims. The report of inquiry committee reads: 'Indecision and mismanagement on part of the Director CAPD Kashmir has led to the destruction of almost 13000 quintals of rice which were sent from Chhattisgarh to help the Kashmiri flood sufferers. Had the administration, the then Director CAPD Bilal Ahmad and present Director A R War, taken the matter seriously and decided segregation in November last or even up to March 2015, the said relief ration would have been distributed among flood sufferers at the right time.' 'It is now very difficult to distribute this ration for human consumption after expiry of almost 10 months,' it adds. According to officials, the rice was not dumped in a scientific manner resulting in its decay. The Minister at that time had put concerned TSO and Assistant Director Stores under suspension. However, the inquiry committee has not held either of these junior officials responsible, stating that they had no authority to distribute the rice. Chhattisgarh had sent 21000 quintals of rice to J&K for its free distribution among flood victims.