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Surprise raid at apple market finds fees evasion worth lakhs

An 11-member inspection team found that only one auction recorder was deputed for open auction, while the auction was going on at more than 15 places in the market

Written by Saurabh Parashar | Panchkula |
August 20, 2021 6:38:25 am
The inspection was ordered by Chief Administrator (CA), Haryana State Agriculture Marketing Board (HSAMB), Vinay Singh, IAS. The Sector 20 apple market is a hub for apple growers mostly from Himachal Pradesh and a few from Kashmir also.

EVASION OF market fee and Human Resource Development Fund (HRDF) amounting to lakhs of rupees, along with several other violations came to the fore during a surprise check at the Sector 20 Apple Market.
The check lasted 36 hours and was conducted between August 13 and August 15. The violations included no records of entry of apple laden trucks and no maintenance of stock registers.

An 11-member inspection team observed that the arrival of apple loaded trucks was increased up to five times on August 14 during the surprised checking and it was increased by four times after starting the incoming and outgoing gate entry in the gate registers. The inspection team concluded that market fee/HRDF was being evaded on a daily basis.

The inspection was ordered by Chief Administrator (CA), Haryana State Agriculture Marketing Board (HSAMB), Vinay Singh, IAS. The Sector 20 apple market is a hub for apple growers mostly from Himachal Pradesh and a few from Kashmir also.

The team found that two of the three market entry gates were unmanned and there was no employee of Market committee at Gate number-2 and 3 to record the incoming and outgoing agriculture produce. It was after the intervention of the inspection team that men were deployed at the two gates and blank registers were handed to them for making entries.

The team found that only one auction recorder was deputed for open auction, while the auction was going on at more than 15 places. The observed that the mandi was crowded at the time of auction and secret signs were also exchanged between the purchaser and the Commission agent.

It was also found that the detail of unsold/ unauctioned Agricultural produce has not been entered in the ‘H’ register of MC and H’ register of Commission Agent. It was also found that there was no ‘HH’ register. The CCTV camera was also found to not be working properly and not properly focused on the gates.

The team summitted its findings to CA Nitin Yadav, recommending that the Secretary Marketing Committee (SMC) has no control over the Apple Market-20, due to which there is an evasion of market fees and HRDF. During inspection it was observed that heavy arrival was recorded on August 14 and 15 as compared to the previous days. The arrival had been increased by up to five times on August 14, during supervision of inspection team and it was increased by four times after starting the incoming and outgoing gate entry in the gate registers.

“I ordered the surprise inspection by a special constituted team. I received the recommendation. There are so many grey areas. As we started recording the entry of every truck and boxes, now there is a resentment on the side of apple growers and farmers. We will take care of all the issues and redress them within the framework of rules,” said Vinay Singh.

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