More than 24,000 government officials were found to have applied for the Maharashtra government's Rs 34,000 crore crop loan waiver scheme, even though they were clearly not eligible as per the norms.
More than 24,000 government officials were found to have applied for the Maharashtra government’s Rs 34,000 crore crop loan waiver scheme, even though they were clearly not eligible as per the norms. “More than one lakh applications were filed by people who do not comply with some or other criteria. Surprisingly, 24,221 of them were state government officials,” a senior government official said today.
Revenue Minister Chandrakant Patil had recently stated that names of some government officials were found in the list of loan waiver applicants, and these names were removed. But this resulted in need for more scrutiny and delay in the implementation of the scheme, he had said. The official said that around 1.30 lakh applications were rejected as they didn’t meet some or other criteria.
“One of the basic criteria was that beneficiary should not have any other major source of income apart from agriculture, and most of the rejected applicants had other sources of income, such as shops, government or semi-government jobs, or some were elected representatives,” the official said.
The scheme is being implemented by the Cooperation Department. Interestingly, 9,262 rejected applications had come from the employees of the Cooperation Department itself, he said. While announcing the scheme, the government had made it clear that government employees — even if they are involved in farming — will not get the benefit of loan waiver.
The scrutiny committee also found 14 cases where the applicant’s spouse was a member of a Zilla Parishad or was an elected representative, the official said.