MUDA files go… missing !
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MUDA files go… missing !

July 9, 2024

Hinders probe; public services come to a halt

Mysore/Mysuru: The inquiry committee members stationed at the Mysuru Urban Development Authority (MUDA) office who are investigating irregularities in plot distribution under the 50:50 ratio scheme and various other scams are encountering a significant hurdle — original records and files are missing from the MUDA record rooms.

The four-member inquiry committee led by R. Venkatachalapathi, Commissioner of Urban Development Authorities and Town and Country Planning, began the investigation in the first week of July. During this process, they have sought files regarding site allotment from the MUDA Commissioner and section officers.

However, during a search of the record rooms, the staff working under the inquiry committee discovered that many original land records, transfer documents and allotment records — especially those related to the 50:50 ratio — have gone missing.

Files found with pages torn off

Sources told Star of Mysore that even within the available files, records have been tampered with and pages have been torn off. So much so that letters written by the Government Under Secretary containing negative opinions regarding the site allotment have been removed from the files to mask Government orders.

Only pages with positive recommendations regarding site allotment have been retained.

Files can move between 18 locations

Typically, as per procedure, files pertaining to site allotment move from the record rooms to various sections. The files could move anywhere between 18 locations.

The file movement can be between the site section, all eight zonal offices, the offices of the Special Tahsildar, the technical section, the office of the Special Land Acquisition Officer, the Secretary’s Office, the establishment section, the MUDA Commissioner’s Secretary’s Office, the city planning division, the accounts section, the legal cell and even the official residence of the Commissioner.

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The staff assigned to search for these documents have expressed their complete helplessness before the committee in tracking numerous documents that could indict leaders and officers, sources added.

Files not returned, some from Commissioner’s residence

The files in the MUDA record room are safeguarded by superintendents, caseworkers and the respective heads of each section, with separate registers maintained to trace the arrival and departure of the files at each step. 

Even at the entrance of the record rooms, there is a logbook to prevent unauthorised entry. Those officers who enter the room must write their names, time of entry and time of exit in the logbook. Additionally, the record rooms are equipped with CCTV cameras for continuous surveillance. 

However, according to the information in the registers, many crucial documents are missing in the sections where they are received after the signatures of the authorities.

Files summoned by the Commissioner through his Secretary are available. However, there is no information on some files sent to the Commissioner’s official residence, as they have not been returned to the MUDA Office.

There is also a system of numbering files when they are summoned by a higher officer through orders issued orally or in writing. Despite this practice, certain files are missing,  raising eyebrows. 

Seeing the crucial files missing, the inquiry committee members have held officers accountable for their gross negligence.

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