Since Chief Minister Akhilesh Yadav has taken over the reins of Uttar Pradesh (UP), he has been busy trying to review the working of various departments and analysing where and what the wrong doings of the previous government have been. In UP, bureaucrats and other government employees seem to have become too unwieldy of late.
The Chief Minister has been getting reports of scams in different departments on a daily basis – the Health Department holds the distinction among all. Though the state seems to have started down the path of development, scams are still pulling the whole process down. The boulders of negligence and swindling need to be removed and those responsible must be shown the door or be shown the way to jails.
The alacrity of the Chief Minister has turned the departments topsy-turvy, and it is speculated that an entire jail would be needed to house the corrupt officials, if all the scams were to come to light. Indian jails, despite having the honour of confining such luminaries as Gandhiji and Jawaharlal Nehru, are now in a pathetic state and all previous measures of upgrading them have fallen flat. Jail Minister Raghuraj Pratap Singh is now expected to do something about it.
Samajwadi Party (SP) supremo, Mulayam Singh Yadav, has announced that the state machinery will come down heavily on such officials who have been found or will be found guilty of power theft. The new regime is trying to invoke the name and memory of Dr. Ram Manohar Lohia in its claimed fight against corruption and the hopes thus rekindled need to be kept alive by establishing a clean administration as was promised in the SP’s elections manifesto. The people are waiting in expectation.
But the SP regime has belied such hopes in the Vidhan Sabha (Legislative Assembly). SP supremo thundered that corrupt officials are conspiring agai
nst the current Chief Minister, but the question is who is to blame for giving such officials positions of power? Vinay Preet Dubey, the officer who had bungled up the auction of sugar mills, has again been appointed as the Managing Director (MD) of the Sugar Mills Union. Why has he not been removed?
The Sugar Mills Union has become a cesspool, and it needs wholesale revamping. Most of the sugar mills are ‘sick’ today because of the nexus of corrupt officials who have been fleecing sugar mills in the state. Many of these officials have given supply contracts to their kith and kin who have been supplying substandard raw material and machinery to the sugar mills at highly inflated prices. The chief administrators of sugar mills are appointed on the basis of political patronage, and they too embezzle in collusion with the lower officials. This has been the chief reason behind most of these units going ‘sick’.
The Sugar Mills Union has become a cesspool, and it needs wholesale revamping. Most of the sugar mills are ‘sick’ today because of the nexus of corrupt officials who have been fleecing sugar mills in the state. Many of these officials have given supply contracts to their kith and kin who have been supplying substandard raw material and machinery to the sugar mills at highly inflated prices.
If Akhilesh wants to revamp the sugar mills, then he must bring the Kanpur-based Sugar Technology Institute in the loop, though it is a central government-funded organisation. The state government should organise a seminar on the issue and elicit experts advice from India and abroad.
Why are sugar mills flourishing in Maharashtra, while they are falling sick one after another in UP? What is the reason behind the fact that private sugar mills are registering increasing profits while state-owned units have become decrepit? The sugar mills that have been auctioned of late must be kept intact and measures must be taken to revive those units rather than dismantling them and putting the land to other uses. The state government should also fulfill the promises made to sugarcane farmers, and must cater to the sugar mills to turn the tide and make them profitable.