Nagpur: The scenario is worrisome. The officials and employees of Nagpur Municipal Corporation (NMC), it seems, are under dark shadows of unscrupulous RTI activists who are found unleashing a kind of terror in the civic body. An “army” of so-called RTI activists has got themselves deployed in the NMC and hitting the day-to-day works hard. Those babus who have been bombarded with RTI posers on more issues than one are forced to cough up moolah for sparing them of expose. And these crooked RTI activists are not the sole tormentors but are ably supported, of course indirectly, by some equally unscrupulous NMC babus and Corporators for vested interests. Fed up with the “harassment,” the victimized officials and employees have now knocked the doors of Chief Minister for “relief.”
Not only the babus, the contractors registered with NMC, are also sailing in the same RTI terror boat.
One could witness dozens of RTI activists, who could aptly be called “middlemen” or “brokers,” are generally former office-bearers, strolling in the corridors of NMC and “searching” for victim officials and employees of different departments. These RTI activists are treated as “VVIPs.” And these “very important persons” hold such a clout over the babus as if they are Anna Hazares.
The ‘victimized’ officials and employees and even the registered contractors pleaded umpteen times with top NMC Administration bosses to get rid of the so-called RTI activists but no stern action was initiated in this regard.
The modus operandi of the “so-called” RTI activists is to pick the “beneficial news” and spread it among the concerned weaklings (guilty officials or employees). And whosoever gets trapped in the “beneficial news,” then the scapegoats are decided, sources said.
The main part of this modus operandi is, sources said, the major share is reserved for the concerned officials for the ‘continuous flow of the beneficial news.’ Other share goes to the employees for digging out the information of ‘illegal files or initiated measures’ and then taking out the entire documents of the “deals” by way of Right to Information. And once armed with the necessary information, the scapegoats (guilty officials or employees) are then approached by the middlemen’s sources for recovery of the dues. If the middlemen or brokers face any difficulty in recovering the dues, the “illegal” issue is then put on the tables of their pet higher officials. The higher officials, in their own tricky way, recover the dues from the scapegoats and the shares of middlemen are then handed over to them.
The ‘terrorized’ officials, employees and contractors have demanded the Chief Minister and Municipal Commissioner to rein in the ‘wicked’ elements who in the garb of RTI activists are indulging in loot in the civic body. “The intentions of those seeking information under RTI should also be listed by the NMC Administration. The movement of these outsiders should also be curbed, otherwise, a non-treatable diseases named “RTI” would take the NMC under its vice-like grip,” warned the harassed lot.
– Rajeev Ranjan Kushwaha ( rajeev.nagpurtoday@g