सोमवार, 19 मार्च 2018

Arbitrary Extension of service and illegal reappointment of T.K.Panda, MD, OSCB

Arbitrary Extension of service and illegal reappointment of T.K.Panda, Managing Director of Odisha State Co-operative Bank violating ‘Fit and Proper Criteria’ prescribed by RBI for CEOs of State Cooperative Banks.

Dear friends

Since last several years,  Odisha has witnessed  severe unemployment  crisis  with lakhs of  educated  youths  battling to get job  in Govt. or private institutions  to live with dignity. While  unemployment  is on rise, the State Govt.  has been  extending  services  of  retired officers/ employees  and also  giving  reappointment of retired employees  in different posts.

The glaring  case is  continuous illegal extension of service of Tusar Kanti Panda, Managing Director of  Odisha State Co-operative Bank  by  the administration flouting  all  norms and regulations. In 2013, Sri Panda   who  was about to retire  at age of 58  on 31.10.2013 , got succeeded  in manipulating the administrative procedure  to get extension of service for two years  w.e.f. 1.11.2013    taking plea of an unauthorised resolution of the Management of OSCB dt.6.05.2009 to enhance the superannuation age of employees of OSCB from 58 years to 60 years violating the statutory order No.21098 dt.1.10.2010 of RCS (O) which prohibited extension of service of employees of Cooperative Societies after their retirement age of 58 years.

In 2014, he again  succeeded  to get another extension of  two years of  his service  as MD of OSCB  upto 62 years  on 21.08.2014 from 1.11.2015 to 31.10.2017. It is learnt  from  information obtained under RTI that his extension of service  was granted  following  recommendation of Professor and HOD of Computer Science Deptt of IIT Kharagpur (Who was a member of the high value controversial CBS procurement committee as consultant of ODCB) on the pretext that second line officers of OSCB are not capable to move forward the CBS computerization project of OSCB successfully overlooking the statutory ban order for extension of service imposed by RCS mentioned above. The CBS software implementation is a big disaster in Cooperative Banks due to defective CBS software procured from v-soft.

It was observed  from the file noting ( File No. COOP-CRI-MISC-0001-2017)  that in 2017, the Co-operation Dept.  again moved a proposal  for  granting extension of service of Sri Panda  for another one year  w.e.f. 1.11.2017 following a resolution taken by the Management  Committee  of OSCB & proposal  of Registrar, Cooperative Society  placed  at incoming  No. 8785/COOP/2017. But  the extension  of  term of  Sri T.K.Panda  was restricted  to six months  from 15.11.17 to 20.4.2018  by Chief Secretary and Chief Minister. It was also instructed  that  within this period, his successor should be identified  by the Cooperation Department.  It would  avoid any disturbance  in the procurement operations.

On 6.3.2018, the State Govt. has  constituted  a Search Committee  headed by Chief Secretary  to find out a person   for the post of  Managing Director, OSCB.  It deserves to be  mentioned here that  the RBI  has prescribed the following  “ Fit and Proper Criteria” for appointment of  CEOs  in State Cooperative  Banks.

i)      For entry level  eligibility to be  relaxed  to 62 years
ii)   For superannuation, the  upper age limit  to be fixed  at 70 years. . However,  the age of  superannuation may  be decided  by RCS   of the respective states after taking into consideration  the recommendations , if any  of the Board  of directors of the Co-opeartive Banks.

 But  astonishingly,  deviating from  RBI norm, the State  Govt.  has    gone to  the extent of  arbitrarily   taking   an additional criteria  of  age relaxation for the existing employees  of the Scheduled  Co-operative Banks.   This  eligibility criteria  has been taken up very cunningly  by the Govt.  with the sole intention of appointing  Sri Panda again through backdoor means. It is very interesting to note that the qualification for the post of MD, OSCB stipulated in the screening committee notification of Cooperation Department dated 6.3.2018 is as per the old ‘fit and proper’ criteria prescribed by RBI dt.18.6.2008, whereas, the qualification stipulated in the advertisement for said post of  issued by Cooperation Department on 7.3.2018 is different and is as per the revised ‘Fit and Proper’ criteria prescribed by RBI dt.3.3.2009 and 5.7.2011.

It deserves  to mention here that during his tenure Sri Panda had allowed around 60 number of high salaried employees of OSCB to illegally continue in service beyond their retirement age of 58 years up to 60 years without approval of Registrar of Cooperative Societies basing on the unauthorised resolution of the Management of OSCB dt.6.05.2009 to enhance the superannuation age of employees of OSCB from 58 years to 60 years violating the statutory order No.21098 dt.1.10.2010 of RCS (O). 

He had also illegally twice revised salary of employees of OSCB at par with RBI in collusion with the employees and Board members without statutory approval of Registrar of Cooperative Societies twice during his tenure over looking provisions of Orissa Cooperative Societies Act, 1962 and disbursed huge amount of arrear salary when the Bank was being bailed out by Government of Orissa from being closed by pumping of huge share capital of Rs 54 Crore to enhanced it’s Capital base  (CRAR 9%) to meet RBI norms since it’s share capital had substantially eroded due to the non-recoverable (loss category NPA) loan of Rs 48 Crore granted to Bijayananda Cooperative Sugar Mills during his tenure and apart from other NPA loans. As per law the entire unauthorised expenditure made for extension of service and  illegal revision of salary of staff without approval of Registrar is recoverable from him. He has successfully thwarted the inquiries conducted on the above matter by putting pressure on the concerned officials.

Though ex-Minister Cooperation had ordered for inquiry u/s 65 of OCS Act, 1962 and vigilance inquiry against him, he had been successful to keep on hold the above inquiries against him for his lobby with some top bureaucrats who are proving him undue protection.

Apart from Kerala in Himachal Pradesh, IAS officers are still posted as Managing Director of State Cooperative Bank despite implementation of Vaidyanathan Committee Recommendation  (VCR) for posting of professionals in State and District Cooperative Banks complying "fit and proper criteria" prescribed by RBI. Currently one Ram Kumar Goutam from Himachal Administrative Service is posted as Managing Director of HPSCB wef 9.1.2018 after Gopal Sharma IAS who was MD of HPSCB from 9.5.16 to 9.1.18. All along IAS are posted in HPSCB for transparent administration and better coordination with District Administrations. But it is hard to understand why in Odisha, a tainted person having several allegations of serious financial irregularities, vigilance cases is given repeated illegal extension of service and some top bureaucrats are again hatching conspiracy to reappoint the said incumbent by hook or crook through back door means up to 70 years taking plea of age enhancement  guideline of NABARD dated 17.1.2018 though he has already crossed 62 years.

Pradip Pradhan
Date- 20.3.18

बुधवार, 14 मार्च 2018

A Report Card on Performance of Odisha Food Commission

Performance  of Odisha State Food Commission - A Report Card

After a protracted fight of Activists against the decision of State Govt. designating Odisha Information Commission as State Food Commission citing  inefficiency of Information Commissioners and pilling  of  more 8000 cases for disposal and demanding its immediate withdrawal, the State Govt. constituted  State Food Commission under 16 of National Food Security  Act  vide notification dated 15.3.16.  A 3-member Commission has  already   completed  two years of its  functioning.

As per the Act, the commission has a mandate to monitor and evaluate the implementation of the National Food Security Act (NFSA) in the State and implementation of  mostly  three  prominent food security schemes like Targeted Public Distribution System, Integrated Child Development Services and Mid Day Meal. Besides that the  Commission  has the power ----------
a.  inspect or cause to be inspected, the non-compliance of policy decisions of the Government relating to NFSA.
b.  either suo motu or on receipt of complaint inquire into violations of entitlement,
c.  hear appeals against orders of the District Grievance Redressal Officer; and
d. give advice to the State Government, their agencies, autonomous bodies as well as non-governmental organisations involved in delivery of relevant services for the effective implementation of food and nutrition related schemes, to enable individuals to fully access their entitlements specified in this Act,
e.   organise regional camps to build awareness about benefits and entitlements under the Act; and
f.  define measures for redressal of grievances in three implementing departments i.e. FS&CW, W&CD and S&ME.  

Keeping in view mandate of the Commission, its  power and functions  under NFSA,  A Review  exercise   about  two years’ performance of State Food Commission  was exercised  by  Right to Food Campaign, Odisha (  a Civil Society Forum spearheading  campaign  for realization of  food security for all and   fighting for elimination of hunger  in the state  ) with the following objectives.
· How the Commission has been successful to observe its mandate to enforce the effective implementation of various provisions of the Act.
· How the Commission has been successful to enforce   availability of entitlements at the door-step of the beneficiaries.
· How the Commission has been effective  to provide justice  to the victims.
 While assessing performance of the Commission from the perspective of inquiry, hear and disposal of cases of violation of NFSA and   rendering justice to the beneficiaries deprived of their entitlements, the Team   has relied  on  Information obtained  under RTI   supplied by the PIO of State Food Commission, Bhubaneswar ( incomplete information was supplied  by the PIO for which First appeal has been filed)  and the Annual Report of the Commission webhosted  in their website.

On 17.1.18. RTI Application was filed   by Sri Bhawani Nanda, retired Banker and RTI Activist and Member of the Team  to the PIO, office of State Food Commission  seeking  the following information from 2016 to 2018.

i. Provide information about  details of number of  cases of violation of provision of NFSA  suo moto taken up by Commission as per the following format
Case No
Subject matter of case
Date of registration of the case by the Commission
 Date of notice/ direction issued
Action taken

ii. Provide information about no. of  complaint cases    filed  in the Commission  as per the following format
Complaint case registered and date of registration
Subject matter of  Complaint
Name of  complaint
Date of notice/direction issued  and action taken by the authority

iii. Provide information about details of hearing of the cases  conducted   by the Commission  as per the following format
Date of hearing
Case No.
Subject matter of  complaint
 Name of the persons present  in the hearing with members of the Commission
Decision of the Commission, if any with date.

iv. Provide details of monitoring made  by Chairman  and members of the Commission as per the following format
Places visited
Name of members of Commission
 Action taken by the Commission

2. Assessment of   Information supplied under RTI     

In response  to RTI Application, The PIO   supplied  the information which were  found incomplete  is as follows.

i. Information about  details of number of  cases of violation of provision of NFSA  suo motto taken up by Commission.
Case No
Subject matter of case
Date of registration of the case by the Commission
 Date of notice/ direction issued
Action taken
Disruption of MDM in Pandaba Patana U.P. School in Tangi Block of Khordha District
Penalty of Rs.5000/- imposed on 9 persons on 10-1-2017
As many as 40 students of Palikiri Nodal U.P. School, Bhagabanpur Panchayat of Dhamnagar Block fell ill on 09.09.2016 after eating Mid Day Meal
Hearing fixed for 27-12-16. Details of hearing and final decision not supplied
As many as 25 students of Satyanarayan U.P. School, Kotkana GP – Tarjang, Block – Tirtol, Dist. Jagatsinghpur fell ill on 07.11.16 after taking Mid Day Meal.
Hearing fixed for 27-12-16. Details of hearing and final decision not supplied
As many as 34 students of Arteswar U.P. School, Jagannathpur, Nahanga Panchayat of Derabis Block fell ill on 16-11-2016 after eating Mid Day Meal.
Hearing fixed for 20-12-16. Details of hearing and final decision not supplied
 (ii)               Information about no. of  complaint cases    filed  in the Commission.
Complaint case registered and date of registration
Subject matter of  complaint
 Name of the Complainant 
Date of notice/direction issued and action taken by the authority
As many as 70 children have already died due to outbreak of Japanese Encephalitis, Maladministration, collapse of health delivery service, food insecurity in Malkangiri District.
Sri Pradip Pradhan, Plot No.D-27, Maitree Vihar, PO – Rail Vihar, Bhubaneswar
Hearing fixed for 20-12-16. Details of hearing and final decision not supplied

(iii)             Details of cases heard  by Chairman  and members of the Commission
Date of hearing
Case No.
Subject matter of complaint
Name of the person present in the hearing with the Members of the Commission
Decision of the the Commission if any with date
25.10.16,  5.11.16,  22.12.16
Disruption of MDM in Pandaba Patana U.P. School in Tangi Block of Khordha District
Shri Niranjan Sahoo, I.A.S., (Collector, Khordha), Sri Gangadhar Sahoo, State Nodal Officer (MDM), Sri Brundaban Satpathy, DEO, Khordha, Sri Maheswar Sahoo, BEO, Tangi, Sri PurnaChandra Mishra CRCC, Tangi, Smt. Soubhagini Debi, Headmistress, Pandabapatana U.P. School, Smt. Manjulata Dei, Assistant Teacher, Pandaba Patana Primary School, Bijaya Kumar Kandi, President, SMC
Penalty of Rs.5000/- imposed on 9 persons on 10-1-2017
02/SFC (S)-2016
As many as 40 students of Palikiri Nodal U.P. School, Bhagabanpur Panchayat of Dhamnagar Block fell ill on 09.09.2016 after eating Mid Day Meal
Sri Gangadhar Sahoo, SNO (MDM), Sri Ranjan Kumar Giri, DEO, Sri Pabitra Mohan Barik, BEO, Dhamanagar, Sri Niranjan Kar, ABEO(MDM), Dhamnagar, MD, Imran, Headmaster Palikiri Nodal UP School, Sri Gouranga Das, Chairperson, SMC, Palikiri Nodal UP School.
Hearing fixed for 27-12-16. Details of hearing and final decision not supplied
03/SFC (S)2016
As many as 70 children have already died due to outbreak of Japanese Encephalitis, Maladministration, collapse of health delivery service, food insecurity in Malkangiri District.
Dr.Parag Harsh Gavil,IAS, PD,DRDA,Malkangiri, Sri Ramkrishna Ganda, P.A., ITDA, Malkangiri, Smt. Prative Kusum Barik, DSWO, Malkangiri, Smt. Bidyutlata Patra, CDPO, ICDS, Kalimela, Smt Annapurna Buruda, CDPO, ICDS, Korakunda, Sri Biranchi Narayan Daran, BDO, Malkangiri
Hearing fixed for 20-12-16. Details of hearing and final decision not supplied

A.   Within two years of its performance , the  Commission  has    taken up  only  four cases  suo moto  and  one  complaint  case filed  by Sri Pradip Pradhan for inquiry.
B.    The Commission has heard only five cases and No information about whether   the case is disposed and final decision announced except case no. 01/FC(S)/2016.  But disposal of complaint case of Pradip Pradhan on Child Death in Malkangiri filed in 2016 is  still  pending.
C.   The Commission miserably failed to supply the copy of the proceedings of the hearing and order of the Commission. Astonishingly,  the judgement  of one case 01/FC(S)/2016 is  found in the website of Commission.
D.   it is observed that in one of the 5 cases i.e. in case No. 01/FC(S)2016,  penalty of Rs.5000/- was imposed on 9 persons  including Smt. Ranjana Chopra, IAS, the then Commissioner-cum-Secretary to Government, School & Mass Education Department and Shri Niranjan Sahoo, IAS,  the then Collector, Khordha. But  the information about whether penalty  has been  collected  from them   has not  been supplied  by the Commission.  
E.   The information about details of  the visit of the Commission as part of their monitoring of  food security programme  has not  been supplied  by the office of  Commission.
F.    While  analyzing  the Annual Report  of the Commission, it  was observed that the Commission has issued  a number of advisories, directions and  recommendations  to various  departments  and district administration for effective implementation of the Act  and also  in respect of  disposal of cases of  complaint on denial of ration card within stipulated time period, identification of  extreme poor eligible Household who have not applied  for Ration  card due to their ignorance and provide them ration card, installation of  dedicated Toll free number in the Dept. to register complaints relating to PDS, SNP, MDM, ICDS etc.,
G.   The Commission has also made review and monitoring of execution of various orders in respect of implementation of the Act at various level and also making field visit to different areas.
Member of Team  of Right to Food Campaifn, Odisha
Pradip Pradhan, M-9937843482
Sri Bhawani Nanda
Sri Srikant Pakal
 Date- 14.3.18

A loss of Rs. 27.71 crore to State Exchequer due to irregular regularisation of land in favour of KIIT

Irregular regularisation of encroached land in favour of KIIT resulted in a loss of Rs. 27.71 crores of State Govt.
Dear friends
The nexus between State Govt. and Sri Ahyut Samant of KIIT in respect of looting land in broad-day light in Bhubaneswar city has been established  and exposed  in every page of CAG report. It has also been found that Sri Samant has gone to  the extent of adopting coercive technique  and  showing goondaism  to grab the land which is not expected from any sensible person in modern world. In his pursuit to grab the land by hook  and crook, he has been reduced to  a mere land mafia who has masqueraded the cloack  of honesty and integrity. The IDCO, the protector of land  has not only flouted  all the laws but adopted all illegal and unethical means to show   undue benefit to KIIT while allotting the land  and remained silent spectator to all his illegal acts.

As per Odisha Prevention of Land Encroachment Act 1972 ( Rule 7), land under encroachment  can not be regularised unless encroacher is a landless person. In this connection, the Revenue and Disaster Management  has ordered ( November 2010) that the land occupied without approval of the Competent authority should be treated as encroachment  and was liable for eviction. Besides, as per Section 29 of OIIDC Act, 1980,  encroachers of IDCO land were to be evicted through application of Odisha Public Premises ( eviction ) Act,1972.

But, KIIT encroached   huge land measuring 16.397 acres in Bhubaneswar  at different times and interestingly, astonishingly  and subsequently regularised by  IDCO which did not have that authority. The details of land encroached  by KIIT   is  as follows.

Plot No.
Area ( in Acre )
Date of regularisation
65 and 2B
24 & 12 A
23B, 23/D, 45,92, 68/A, 68/B, 91, 91/A, 91/B, 22/A/2, &41/E
Excess land


Procedure followed by IDCO to regularise encroached land of KIIT

A.                The Divisional Head, Bhubaneswar Construction Division-1 notified  ( March 2003) the Secretary, KIIT about unauthorised encroachment over IDCO  plot No. 88 in  Chandaka Industrial Estate  and requested him to stop birbed wire fencing work. Without refraining  from encroachment action, KIIT requested ( May 2003 ) IDCO that since the plots were very adjacent to its premises and no industrial unit was present the said land, these plots be adopted in its favour. But the BCD-1 issued show-cause notice ( June 2004 )  to KIIT for illegal  construction  of  boundary wall with a gate  which was causing hindrances to other allottees and requested KIIT to demolish the un-authorised structures raised. In response to show-cause notice, KIIT admitted ( July, 5, 2004 ) the encroachment, stated that it had spent Rs. 20 lakh on the construction of boundary wall and pressurised IDCO to resolve the issue quickly, as 5000 students were said to be present on the said encroached land. BCD-1 succumbed  to the pressure  and agreed on the same date ( July 5, 2004 ) to resolve the issue even without approval of MD, IDCO on the condition  that (1)  KIIT would pay the cost of land at the rate of Rs. 25 lakh  ( i.e., premium of land Rs. 2.25 lakh  and development fee Rs. 22.75 lakh ) per acre, (2) furnish an undertaking not to encroach upon IDCO land in future, and  (3 ) in case of breach of condition, the cost of the land will be forfeited and IDCO would resume the ownership of the land. The in-house  Land Allotment committee  agreed ( August 2004 ) to the proposal of BCD-1 and the same was approved by MD, IDCO ( Sept. 2004 ). The Board  chaired by CMD, IDCO in its 65th meeting ( April 2005 )  approved the regularisation of encroachment by KIIT. Accordingly, 9.809 acres of land was allotted in favour of KIIT ( April 2005 ). KIIT was accorded undue favour by charging less premium at the rate of 2.25 lakh rupees per acre against Rs. 25 lakh per acre  as per revised land  cost fixed by GA Dept. ( May 1998 ). The undertaking by KIIT against non-encroachment in future  was furnished  ( June 2005 ) on a stamp paper  without being registered under any  act  of law.

B. In 2008, S.M. Consultant  conducted a survey  of IDCO  land and reported  that 23.547 acre of land in Chandaka Industrial Estate  under  unauthorised occupation of KIIT. Besides above, KIIT was also in occupation of excess land measuring 1. 905 acres inside its premises by illegally constructing  a boundary wall. When pointed out, KIIT again admitted ( March 2008 ) that they had encroached upon about five acres of land  and requested IDCO for further allotment. Interestingly, IDCO,  without forfeiting the cost of the land realised previously and resuming its ownership as per the previous terms of agreement  signed between KIIT and IDCO, illegally  regularised ( July 2009 ) 6.588 acres o receipt of Rs. 4.17 crores from the institution. In the assessment of the cost, due to non-adoption of the benchmark valuation of land ( Rs. 4.50 crore per acre ) fixed by Revenue Dept. with effect from 2008, the IDCO sustained a loss of revenue to the extent of Rs. 25.48 crore.

Due to frequent changes in Board decisions and non-adherence to its own principles, IDCO sustained  loss of Rs. 27.71 crores. This amounted to IDCO and  the entire state machinery succumbing to the pressure tactics of a private educational institution like KIIT.

Pradip Pradhan
Date- 13.3.18