KARNATAKA

Officials directed to complete unfinished works

CHITRADURGA, OCT. 7. S.R. Umashankar, Deputy Commissioner, has instructed the officials concerned in the district to lift the foodgrains allotted to the district for taking up drought relief works and complete all the unfinished works in the district immediately.

Presiding over the progress review meeting on drought relief works here on Thursday, Mr. Umashankar warned the officials of severe action if they refused to take up the works after lifting the foodgrains.

Deadline

M. Ravindrappa, executive engineer, Public Works Department, informed Mr. Umashankar that the engineers had not taken up drought relief works.

The engineers were not able to take up drought relief works as the Government had fixed 25 per cent cash component and 75 per cent foodgrain component under the scheme.

Relieved from duty

Mr. Umashankar said that officials who were unwilling to lift the foodgrains and had not taken up the works would be relieved from duties immediately.

"The drought relief works should be taken up immediately and all the departments should lift their quota of foodgrains within 15 days. There is no point in losing out on foodgrains and money allotted for the works for the fear of a scam," he said. He promised the officials that alternate arrangements would be made to increase the cash component if necessary.

He directed the officials to complete the unfinished works before taking up new works.

Recommendation

"New works can be taken up only in Challakere and Hiriyur taluks, which have been declared as drought hit taluks," he said.

He also said that he would recommend the Government to declare the remaining taluks in the district as drought hit.

Mr. Umashankar directed the officials to formulate a programme to distribute fodder to small and marginal farmers, and also to farmers belonging to Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes by October 21.

Proper facilities

He warned the hostel wardens in the district of severe action if proper facilities were not provided at the hostels.

"The pass percentage in hostels should be a minimum of 75 per cent. The job of wardens does not end after providing proper facilities. They should motivate the students to perform well in the exams," he said.

Precautionary measures

Mr. Umashankar asked the farmers not to panic if the prices decreased.

"Farmers can store their produce in Agricultural Produce Marketing Committee godowns, and get 50 per cent of the value of goods immediately from the Agricultural Produce Revolving Fund. They can sell their produce when they get a better price," he added.

He asked the officials of the Department of Agriculture and the Department of Agricultural Marketing to take precautionary measures to stop the exploitation of farmers by middlemen.

He directed officials of the APMC to compulsorily use electronic weighing machines.

S.H. Vijay Kumar, headquarters assistant to the Deputy Commissioner; G. Nagappa, Additional Superintendent of Police; and Shamla Ahmed, Assistant Commissioner, participated in the meeting.