RTI reveals RTO staff in Jammu has overstayed for years; this is cause of corruption allege activists
There is rampant corruption in the RTO department in Jammu as majority of the employees in the office have overstayed for decades, and they have indulged in every sort of corrupt practice during their tenure. This startling allegation was made by senior RTI activist Balvinder Singh today, along with several other RTI activists who have been using this Act to bring out the real facts in governance. Singh alleged that despite clear instructions that VIP numbers will be auctioned as per rules and regulations while being allotted to the people, the same has not been followed in practice by the RTO authorities.
Balvinder Singh alleged that as per the government order the vanity numbers should be sold for a particular price to the buyers, and if there are more claimaints for a particular number then there needs to be proper auction for the sale of such numbers. The RTI activists however alleged that blue-eyed boys, and favourites of the government are being alloted VIP numbers out of turn whereas genuine buyers are being given a short shrift by the government. Singh alleged that common man is not allowed to participate in the auctions, and only those who are connected and influential are able to get these numbers. This however is leading to huge loss of revenue for the state exchequer as lakhs of rupees are being collected by the transport department in states like Delhi, Haryana, Chandigarh by the sale of the vanity numbers.
The RTI activist further alleged that almost all the staff members have over-stayed in their position at the RTO office Jammu for decades, and this is basically the route cause of the corruption. Singh alleged that important tasks like registration of vehicles, issue of permits, and passing of vehicles is being done by the same individuals for the past several years, and this has lead to major corruption in the department with large number of touts, agents and middlemen playing a major role in greasing the system.
Citing an instance Singh alleged that one head clerk in the department has stayed put for 33 years in the department but has not been transferred. He said that some times the corrupt staff is transferred by senior officials but the blue-eyed clerical staff has strong connections with the politicians, and they have repeatedly managed to get back to the department despite being involved in questionable practices.
The RTI activists further alleged that all efforts were made by the staff of the RTO office to deny information, and data despite repeated attempts and RTIs. It was also after the intervention of the State Information Commissioner, and his direction to the State Transport Commissioner, and RTO Jammu that requisite information about the issue of numbers as well as long stay of RTO staff could be revealed. Singh, and other activists alleged that this was nothing but a huge scam which was being perpetrated by the nexus of bureaucrats, politicians, and the RTO staff in league with middlemen.