BHOPAL: Various transport associations have been levelling serious corruption charges against the staff of the transport department posted at the inter-state border. The most interesting part is that, after the transporters complained to the Lokayukta, their complaint was forwarded to the transport department for investigation.
“We’ve been complaining at all platforms. We complained to the senior officials of the transport department and the police, as well, but no action was taken,” said CL Mukati, president of the Indore Truck Operators’ and Transport Association. This association has been representing other transporter groups, as well.
After the transporters didn’t get response from other agencies a complaint was submitted with the Lokayukta. After no initial response, reminders were written to the lokayukta in August, September and December urging them to trap the corrupt officials posted at inter-state border check posts.
After lot of follow-up of the complaints, the Lokayukta forwarded the complaint to the transport department. This was rather shocking for the transporters as the complaint was forwarded to the same department against which the charges were made, Mukati added.
The deputy commissioner of the transport department asked the applicants to go to Gwalior so that their statements could be recorded. This letter was less of an invitation and more of a threat. “We were asked to go to Gwalior from Indore at 12.30 pm on January 6. The letter said that, if we failed to appear on the said date, then ex parte action would be taken,” said another transporter. “The Lokayukta traps corrupt officials, but it’s strange that not a single member of the staff of the transport department posted at the border checkposts has been caught red-handed so far,” he added.
Transporters believe that about Rs 200 crore per month is being recovered at the border check posts by the transport officials, which is not possible without the patronage of senior officials.
‘Photos and videos’
"More than 50 transporters have given their statement as sworn affidavits to the Lokayukta. Moreover, we’ve given them photographs and videos of transport officials taking money from truck drivers at the check-post," CL Mukati, president of the Indore Truck Operators’ and Transport Association, said.