By Manjula Devaiah
Manjula (in picture) is a legal expert and corporate compliance manager with a US multi-national company.
Chief minister H.D. Kumarasway who visited Kodagu in July following the telecast of a video against him by a Kodagu boy which went viral, had announced Rs 100 crore relief to the district hit by unprecedented rains.
Now the big question is how the fund is going to be spent, knowing the way government funds are siphon off by middlemen and officials.
Kumaraswamy had instructed the officials to submit a detailed report on the relief and rehabilitation works required to build the areas destroyed by the heavy rainfall. “An estimated property worth Rs. 326 crore has been damaged in the monsoons so far. Funds for relief works will be released soon,” he added.
Subsequently, Virajpet MLA K. G. Bopaiah stated that the state government had released Rs 100 crore to Kodagu, towards various works in the district which leaves many questions! His statement mentions a few projects which have nothing to do with flood relief. This lack of clarity of information may possibly lead to corrupt practices.
As we all know the reasons for corruption is absence of honesty and integrity, deficiency of transparency and accountability, interconnection between leaders, public servants and agents.
To ensure efficient and transparent utilization of funds, the people of Kodagu should use the tool provided by the Right to Information Act, 2005, a powerful law to access information and highlight any wrong-doing and speak up when there is smell of corruption, fake projects or proposals etc. We should ensure the government funding will not be utilized for personal gain and all the projects must be completed ethically and timely and appropriately.
The people of Kodagu have historically upheld corruption-free administration which has apparently suffered in the recent decades.