Call for probe into corruption in Haliya rehabilitation programmeFreed Haliyas (bonded farmers) have demanded investigation into alleged financial irregularities that took place in 12 districts of mid and far western districts during Haliya rehabilitation programme.
Freed Haliyas (bonded farmers) have demanded investigation into alleged financial irregularities that took place in 12 districts of mid and far western districts during Haliya rehabilitation programme.
The Federation of National Freed Haliya Society has accused some of its own representatives, employees of land revenue offices and fraud Haliyas of embezzling money meant to be distributed to former Haliyas for their rehabilitation.
Rajuram Bhul, the former president of the federation, said a complaint was filed with the authorities after it was discovered that many non-Haliyas had received rehabilitation grants.
“We have come across cases where the people responsible for distributing the rehabilitation grants were keeping up to 20 percent of the money for themselves as commission. There is also a fraud case in which officials were found recording fake names on the grant recipient list,” he said.
According to the federation, fake Haliyas outnumber the genuine ones by five to one. In Dadeldhura, there are 2,551 freed Haliyas; 1,895 of them have received freed Haliya ID cards.
Ashok Sarki, chief of the District Land Revenue Office, said there are 290 Haliyas listed in class ‘A’, 552 in class ‘B’, 252 in class ‘C’ and 795 in class ‘D’. “We have already distributed around Rs 170 million to the freed Haliya families in Dadeldhura,” said Sarki.
The government had released Rs 245.1 million for Haliya rehabilitation programme in Dadeldhura.
Each family received Rs 200,000 to buy land, another Rs 325,000 for building homes and Rs 125,000 for maintenance. The sum is being distributed in two instalment, Sarki said.
“Seventy percent of the total amount is distributed in first instalment and the remainder sum in the second one,” he added.
Harke Luhar, a freed Haliya from Ganeshpur in Dadeldhura, said 80 percent of the freed Haliyas had not built homes after receiving the rehabilitation grants from the government.
“These are the fake Haliyas. Many of them have used the money to buy properties in the Tarai, while some have used the money to clear their debts. The ones building homes are the genuine Haliyas,” he claimed.
Following the federation’s complaint, the District Administration Office, Dadeldhura, has formed a panel to probe into the alleged irregularities.
“The panel will investigate who are the genuine Haliyas and who are the fake ones. Besides, I have also instructed the concerned agency to distribute the grants only after conducting background checks of the recipients,” said CDO Mohan Raj Joshi.