Neyaz Elahi

Srinagar: Days after the President of the Ward Officers Association, Srinagar Municipal Corporation (SMC), Muhammad Maqbool Bhat was trapped by the Anti-Corruption Bureau (ACB) in a corruption case, Commissioner SMC has placed 3 Ward Officers including Bhat and 2 Building Inspectors under suspension.

On the directions of Commissioner SMC Athar Aamir Khan, Secretary SMC has issued formal orders in this regard. All these SMC officials have been suspended on the allegations of corruption and malpractices.

The suspended official are the then in- charge ward officer (18-Safakadl), presently ward officer (20-Nawab Bazar) Nighat Ara, Building Inspector (ward 18-Safakadl) Hafizullah Parray, ward officer (19-Pala Pora Eidgah) Sheikh Ilyas, junior building officer (19-Pala Pora Eidgah) Nisar Ahmed Mir and ward officer (10-Zadibal) Muhammad Maqbool Bhat.

Muhammad Maqbool Bhat was recently arrested by Anti Corruption Bureau for demanding and accepting the bribe for allowing a construction.

After the arrest of Bhat, sources told news agency Kashmir News Trust Commissioner SMC, Athar Aamir Khan sought the list of all officials against whom corruption allegations had been levelled and besides Bhat, suspended 4 officials.

Sources added that there are allegations against the Nighat Ara and Hafizullah Parray that they facilitated the illegal construction of a building in Safakadal area some 5 months ago.

Sheikh Ilyas and Nisar Ahmed Mir have been accused of allowing illegal construction in Palapora area.

During the period of their suspension, these officials will remain attached with the office of Chief Anti-Encroachment Officer-SMC.

Joint Commissioner SMC, Syed Abdul Qasim has been appointed as Enquiry Officer who shall charge sheet the suspended officials namely Sheikh Ilyas and Nisar Ahmed immediately and furnish his report with clear remarks and recommendations.

In-Charge Superintending Engineer Drainage Circle, SMC, Mr Abdul Khaliq has been appointed as Enquiry Officer who shall charge sheet the suspended officials namely Nighat Ara and Hafizullah Parray immediately and furnish his report with clear remarks and recommendations.

Meanwhile, SMC filed staff including Ward Officers and Building Inspectors have decided to protest against these suspensions. One of the Ward Officers told KNT that they should not be held responsible for all the mess. “Even if we report and inform authorities about the illegal constructions and seek help from them, no one comes forward. We have become the scapegoats,” he added. (KNT)

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