After a drive carried out last year exposed 2.8 lakh bogus ration cards,Food and Civil Supplies Minister Anil Deshmukh on Friday announced a special drive to weed out more such cards in Pune district.
We have cancelled all the non-eligible cards. A similar drive will be carried out this year so that the real beneficiaries are not deprived of benefits, said Deshmukh.
He said with the state having nearly 12 lakh bogus card holders,the drive has been initiated district wise.
He said officers who have issued these cards will face action. We had initiated criminal action against officials who cleared the documents. Its an ongoing process, he added.
Officials from the department said the pension of erring rationing officers would also be stopped. We are taking strict action against erring officials. The list is being readied, said an officer. As per the government resolution,officers will have to face stringent punishment for negligence and issuing bogus ration cards.
Deshmukh said the department has observed officers issuing bogus cards in almost the entire state. We will file FIRs against such officers after a preliminary investigation, he said.
The GR is for government officials who seek bribe to issue a ration card,indulge in corruption,violating rules and irregularity at the time of issuing cards. The district administration has been encouraging people to register complaints against such officials.
The GR clearly states that depending on the seriousness of the crime,a case will registered against an official. The department has discovered that were many ration cards were issued in the names of Chief Minister Prithviraj Chavan,Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Akhilesh Yadav,Gujarat Chief Minister Narendra Modi and Indian cricket team captain Mahendra Singh Dhoni.
Officials said the department suspended two rationing officers after a committee formed to look into irregularities submitted its report. There are several cases which have been registered against such officials and strict action will be taken against them, said officials.