A massive scam has been uncovered in Hathinapur panchayat of Barpeta district in Assam and three gram panchayat employees were arrested in connection with the matter on Sunday.
According to sources, three panchayat employees were arrested after an FIR was filed by the Bhawanipur Block Development Officer (BDO). Another accused was detained for questioning by the police.
Panchayat President Hasan Ali, Secretary Brishti Ram Daimary, and Coordinator Mir Hussain have been apprehended, while Tax collector Ratan Talukdar is currently detained for further investigation.
The alleged scam involved the accused deceiving beneficiaries and providing them with a sum of Rs. 20,000 to 30,000, while looting them off lakhs of rupees by showing them misleading pictures of entirely furnished houses even as in reality, the houses are still under construction.
Sources also indicate that he presented alternative photographs to cover up the fact that the houses were unfinished.
The Sarupeta police are presently interrogating the panchayat president and secretary, as authorities work diligently to uncover the full extent of the fraudulent activities.
This incident has raised serious concerns regarding the implementation and oversight of the Prime Minister's Housing Scheme, necessitating stricter measures to safeguard against such exploitation in the future.