MALDA, 22 APRIL: Around 575 children were not immunized in today’s pulse polio programme as the villagers boycotted the programme alleging corruption against the panchayet members. Block development officer (BDO) who went to rescue the volunteers faced the wrath and was gheraoed himself in turn.
All this took place at village Maheshpur under Kaliachak-1 block when the volunteers went this morning as a part of Pulse Polio programme. But the villagers refused to bring their children out. They alleged that Panchayet Samity member Asraful Sheikh or Gram Panchayet member Tofijul Hazi had collected money from the villagers against the housing schemes under Indira Awas Yojana but none of them got the houses. They cried, “The administration must bring the members and clarify when we would get our houses.”
They also alleged that rural electrification scheme in the village too were going through nepotism. The contractors were amassing money from number of villagers in the name of electrification but none of them got the line. The villagers claimed, “Unless these are clarified we won’t allow our babies to be immunized.”
At this point BDO Tamajit Chakraborty went to the spot but the angry villagers showed agitation to him also. BDO assured them to enquire into the allegations raised by the villagers to lift the blockade. Later speaking to media Chakraborty said, “The allegations are serious. None should pay any money for government schemes. I assured to look into the matters. The pulse polio programme for those children in this area will take place tomorrow.”