DERA GHAZI KHAN-The plan of Sasta Ramazan Bazaars has failed to produce desired results, and these bazaars have become a burden on national exchequer.

They, however, have become an easy way to make money for the officials of Municipal Corporation, Market Committees and District Administration.

Talking to The Nation, an officer of Municipal Corporation (MC), seeking anonymity, disclosed that every year corrupt mafia in the state department of DG Khan MC made bogus bills, with the connivance of contractors, showing false rates for the purchase, repair and rent of different items for establishing Ramazan Bazaars in DG Khan, Kot Chutta, and Taunsa Sharif.

He said that in 2017 and 2018, former mayor Shahid Hameed Chanida and his companions including official staff made bogus bills of Rs5449,897 and Rs6501,454 for the establishment of two Ramazan Bazaars in DG Khan City and awarded contracts to the blue-eyed contractors. He added during the current year, two Sasta Ramazan Bazaars have been established in the city from May 1, 2019 without following PPRA rules and legal procedure. “All arrangements were made before the date of bidding i.e. May 13, 2019.

He said: “Every year, the advertisement of quotation notice is published in newspapers, but it is only for completion of file work. Like previous years, the corrupt mafia of DG Khan MC, with the connivance of contractors, will make bogus bills bearing false rates at the end of the Ramazan.”

He added: “On the date of bidding (May 13, 2019), no bidder was present in the office of DG Khan MC till evening for bidding process, but at the time of claim of expenditure all bidding process will be mentioned in the bogus bills.”

He explained that there was very little relief, between Rs2 and Rs11 per item, for public in the prices of 18 essential agricultural items including potato, onion, tomato, ladyfinger, bitter gourd, squash, banana, dates, apple, pulses, rice, garlic, and ginger. Besides, the number of customers was also very low at Ramazan Bazaars.

As per Market Committee DG Khan Record, in 2017, a total of 71257 customers (average 1,149 customers per day) purchased essential commodities in these bazaars while expenditures of DG Khan MC and Market Committee DG Khan were Rs5449,897 and Rs3456,912 respectively.

Similarly in 2018, total 104,579 customers (average 1,742 customers per day) purchased essential commodities at Ramazan Bazaars in the city while expenditures of DG Khan MC and Market Committee were Rs6501,454 and Rs3708,695 respectively. He said that costly tents, decorations and high standard arrangements at Sasta Ramazan Bazaars were useless for people. He added that the plan of Sasta Ramazan Bazaars was introduced by former PML-N government which need not to be repeated by the current government.

He added if the government improved the roll of Price Control Magistrates and Price Control Mechanism of the Department of Agriculture (Economics and Marketing), it would be best for the poor public as compare to minor relief of Sasta Ramazan Bazaars.