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State Govt loses several lakhs of revenue per day

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Illegal collection on NH

By Our Reporter

 SHILLONG: Meghalaya Govt is losing several lakh rupees everyday from the Transport Department alone, says a prominent member of the Assembly Committee on Illegal Collection on National Highways.

A test check of the Depa Garat transport check point which is roughly 20 km from Dainadubi where the Taxation check gate is located has found grave anomalies between the collection raked in by the Taxation department and that collected by the Transport Department from overloaded trucks.

On November 29, when some members of the Committee visited Garo Hills they found that while the Taxation check gate had charged 490 trucks for overloading, the Transport Check gate had receipts for fines collected from only 40 trucks.

The question that the Committee is asking is where have the 450 trucks disappeared from the Transport Check Gate list. Either the Transport officials of East Garo Hills did not issue receipts for the 450 trucks which means a loss of revenue, or that they charged the trucks for overloading but the money has found its way into private pockets.

According to a Committee member the total loss per day from this single check gate is Rs 12-15 lakhs which works out to Rs 4.5 crore a month. In 8 months which is the peak season for coal mining and cement production the revenue loss would be to the tune of Rs 35 crore annually from one check gate alone

The Committee had asked the Transport officials to provide them the receipts for the month of November 2011 but they have not yet received the documents even after 3 weeks. This has made the Committee suspect that there are no receipts for the 450 overloaded trucks so the Department or its officials are unable to produce them. The delay they feel might be because they have to manufacture the receipts.

When asked by the Committee member where the Transport officials deposit the daily collection the answer they got was that it is deposited in the bank. If that is so why are they finding it so hard to produce the authenticated receipts, ask the Committee members.

A Committee member said the reason he is talking is because it would take months before the Committee completes its report and for action to be taken. “Until such time my conscience does not permit me to allow a wrong to be committee in broad daylight.

It may be reminded that the same Committee had recently exposed the large scale corruption in the Byrnihat Taxation and Transport check gates following which the Government effected mass transfer of the officials complicit in the scam.

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