JOWAI: Two prominent organisations of Jaintia Hills – the Jaintia Students’ Union (JSU) and the Jaintia Youth Federation (JYF) – have called a public meeting to make the people aware of alleged misappropriation of District Council funds by JHADC Chief Executive Member (CEM) MB Rymbai.
The public meeting will be held on February 21 in Iawmusiang, Jowai, at 12 noon.
Speaking to media persons here, JSU president Rikut N Parien and JYF president PL Majaw said, “We are deeply concerned over the misuse of public money by the CEM of the Jaintia Hills Autonomous District Council (JHADC).
“This is public money and we feel that the people of Jaintia Hills should come forward and fight against corruption” Majaw said, adding, “If we do not stop this we don’t know what will be the future of the JHADC.”
The two organisations, further, stated that if corruption continues in the JHADC, a time will come when the District Council will fail to function normally. “If the District Council fails to function, the people will lose their rights and interests,” Parien said.
Both the leaders also condemned the misappropriation of funds by the leader of the District Council and demanded his immediate arrest, while asking police to complete their investigation at the earliest.
“Since this is an issue that concerns the people of jaintia Hills, we request all people, NGO leaders and also the ‘beneficiaries’ to attend the said meeting,” the JYF said.
WJH police chief assures proper investigation,
necessary action under law
Even after two complaints were lodged against JHADC Chief Executive member MB Rymbai in two separate scams – one relating to land compensation in Khliehtyrshi village amounting to Rs.1.15 crore and another scam amounting to Rs.1.18 crore involving discretionary grants and gratuity relief which Rymbai allegedly and fraudulently withdrew using the names of over 200 beneficiaries without their knowledge, West Jaintia Hills Police is yet to arrest Rymbai, citing pending investigation.
The police inaction has led to widespread condemnation of the force among people of Jaintia Hills. “If a common man steals a piece of bread for his hungry stomach, police immediately arrest him and thrown him behind the bars, but what about the JHADC chief?” questioned the people.
An under-pressure West Jaintia Hills Superintendent of Police, Herbert G Lyngdoh, asserted that Jowai Police were doing their best to investigate both the cases.
“I want the people of Jaintia Hills to trust us. We are doing our job well,” Lyngdoh said, adding that the law treats everyone as equal.
The district police chief, further, informed that he has entrusted the cases to two of his senior officers. The case relating to the land compensation has been entrusted to the district Deputy Superintendent of Police while the JHADC scam has been handed over to a Circle Inspector.
“Both the officers have been asked to speed up the investigation process and we will follow all procedures to arrest him. Trust me. I assure you that the law is equal for everybody,” Lyngdoh said, adding that after establishment of concrete evidences against the CEM, the law to take its own course of action.
The police chief, further, informed that immediately after a complaint was received, police registered a case under Sections 464, 468, 469, 420, 409 and 500 of the Indian Penal Code.
“We have also seized official documents from the Finance and Accounts Department of the JHADC and the same has been sent to the Forensic and Science Laboratory for authentication of signatures,” the SP informed.
Rymbai fails to get anticipatory bail from court
JOWAI: Sources on Tuesday informed that JHADC CEM MB Rymbai has approached the District Sessions Court seeking anticipatory bail.
Rymbai is alleged to have been involved in two major scams, involving Rs.1.15 crore and Rs.1.18 crore, respectively.
Sources informed that Rymbai’s attempts to seek anticipatory bail failed as his lawyers from Shillong could not reach Jowai.
When contacted, West Jaintia Hills Superintendent of Police, Herbert G Lyngdoh, denied having any knowledge of the same. “I have no idea, but we will plead the court to reject his anticipatory bail petition.”