The government never tires of motivating the youth to start their own enterprises. But some of those who took the advice seem to be in trouble – strangely at the hands of the government itself. A small scale industry set up by a city youth runs the risk of being closed all because the authorities are holding up the payment for services rendered by him.

The Print Time and Business Enterprises of Syed Asif faces just this dilemma. His unit located in Moghalpura supplied 100 days of study material for tenth class boarders of Social Welfare Hostels during 2010-11. But seven months after print and delivery of the subject books, the payment is yet to be made. The inordinate delay in payment of Rs. 22.27 lakh has brought the unit almost to the brink of closure.

Every year, 100 days study material in seven subjects is provided to hostel boarders who are average and below average before the public examination. During 2008-09, the Social Welfare Department floated tenders and awarded the job to M/s Print Time and Business Enterprises as it quoted the lowest rate of 85 paise per page.

In 2009-10 also, the department placed orders with the same firm. Since there was no time to call for tenders, the same firm was given the work order again for the academic year 2010-11 as it agreed to supply the material at the old rates.

“We supplied 42,268 sets of study material worth Rs. 22.27 lakh in August, but so far no payment is made,” deplores Mr. Asif who has represented the matter to the Commissioner, Social Welfare, Principal Secretary, Social Welfare Minister and even the Chief Minister, but to no avail.

The authorities, it is said, are seeking government instructions with regard to payment as the work order was given without calling for tenders. “But why should I be made to suffer for somebody's mistake,” asks Mr. Asif.

He is particularly worried about the heavy interest he is paying for the loan obtained from a bank to print the study material. Worse, he is unable to get fresh orders since he owes money to the paper dealers and nobody is ready to give paper.

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