An Up-Pradhan and a father in-law of a Pradhan of Toubul Gram Panchayat has been accused of withdrawing a sum of Rs 51, 000, honorarium of 17 months, using a forged signature of Toubul GP ward member in Manipur.
Speaking to the media at the Manipur Press Club, Imphal on Monday, Toubul GP Ward Number 2 member, Thokchom Jiban, said that Toubul GP, Up-Pradhan Thoudam Gopal and Pradhan's father-in-law, Thokchom Bira Singh, withdrew 17 months’ honorarium of GP members using his signature at the APR.
He informed that a sum of Rs 3,000 per month is being paid to all the elected ward members as honorarium and added that he has not been getting his honorarium from October 2019 to March 2021. He then went to the office of the BDO, CD Block, Nambol on July 14, 2022 to enquire about his honorarium but was informed by the dealing staff that there is no such long pending of the honorarium. On checking the report, he found one Actual Payee Receipt (APR) of Rs 51,000, which is the amount of 17-month honorarium, already withdrawn.
According to BDO Nambol, the amount had been withdrawn by Up-Pradhan Thoudam Gopal Singh of Toubul GP and Pradhan’s father-in-law, Thokchom Bira Singh, Thokchom Jiban informed.
The APR was found issued to Thokchom Jibol, member of ward number 2 of Toubul GP and the APR was found credited to him. The accountant refused to furnish him with a copy of the APR but he took a photograph of the APR in his mobile, Jiban said.
Thokchom Jiban said that the honorarium amount was increased from Rs 1000 to Rs 3000 per month but he was not paid for four months, i.e., January 2018 to April 2018.
He said that he used to ascribe his signature as ‘Th Jiban Singh’ however, his signature at the APR has been found ascribed as ‘Th Jibol Singh’.
“I had never signed my signature as Th Jibol Singh at any time,” said Th Jiban.
The APR was found verified by Thoudam Gopal Singh, Up-Pradhan of Toubul GP, he said and added that normally such APR was signed in presence of the dealing staff (accountant) of the BDO office after taking permission of the BDO.
Why the BDO Nambol remained silent when Up-Pradhan and Pradhan’s father-in-law took out the honorarium with the forged signature of elected panchayat members, he asked.
It is unfortunate that the BDO allowed withdrawal of honorariums of elected members with the forged signature, he said and added that he complained to SP Vigilance and Anti-Corruption Department but no action has been taken up. Therefore, he urged the chief minister and other concerned authorities to look into the matter and provide his honorarium.