Crores of rupees go "missing" from bank accounts; AP govt clarifies

PTI | | Updated on: Jun 30, 2022

The government said DA arrears amount was “erroneously” credited into the GPF accounts of the employees “due to a technical glitch”

Hundreds of crores of rupees reportedly went "missing” from the bank accounts of over 90,000 employees of Andhra Pradesh government and there were allegations that the government has withdrawn the money, a charge denied by the Special Chief Secretary (finance) SS Rawat on Wednesday.

The amount was “withdrawn illegally” after it was credited into the General Provident Fund (GPF) accounts of the employees, it was alleged.

Responding, the State government said the DA arrears amount was “erroneously” credited into the GPF accounts of the employees “due to a technical glitch”.

Citing preliminary information furnished by the Director of Treasury and Accounts, Rawat said in a statement that the DA arrears were credited even though the bills were not cleared.

“As per Treasury rules, all bills which remain pending as on March 31 every year shall be cancelled by the treasury officer concerned. Due to the cancellation of unpaid DA arrear bills, the adjustment amounts that were erroneously credited to the GPF accounts were also reversed by the system software,” Rawat added.

The Special Chief Secretary said the government was taking necessary measures to rectify the technical glitch.

Earlier, today, the government employees’ associations raised the matter with the State Finance Department officials here, but nothing came of it.

The associations called the "illegal withdrawal" not only unconstitutional but also criminal.

Leaders of AP Joint Action Committee and AP Joint Action Committee Amaravati met the Special Chief Secretary here today and sought a clarification.

“The Special Chief Secretary claims the government did not withdraw the money. He says it could have happened due to a technical error and promised to enquire into it,” chairman of Andhra Pradesh Non-Gazetted Officers Association Bandi Srinivasa Rao told reporters after meeting Rawat.

The issue figured in the High Court, which directed the government to file an affidavit within two weeks.

The employees’ associations petitioned the Principal Accountant General also over the issue as he is the custodian of the GPF accounts, according to the Andhra Pradesh Government Employees Association president K R Suryanarayana.

Suryanarayana, from whose individual account itself a sum of ₹83,000 went missing, wondered how could the "government withdraw money from someone’s account without consent."

“This happened in the month of March but came to light now when, on Monday night, the accounts auditor general was verifying the GPF statements of employees. It happened once previously last year and after we complained about it to the Chief Secretary, the amount was re-credited into the employees’ accounts,” Suryanarayana said.

In March, the government credited arrears of dearness allowance into the employees’ GPF accounts but then withdrew the amount immediately.

Opposition lambasts government

The opposition parties demanded an explanation from the Chief Minister over the illegal withdrawal of employees’ money. They also demanded publication of a white paper on the whole issue

Telugu Desam Party MLC and former chairman of AP NGOs Association P Ashok Babu demanded that the government publish a white paper on the financial transactions.

Jana Sena Political Affairs Committee chairman Nadendla Manohar said in a statement that the Chief Minister owed an explanation on where the "₹800 crore of employees’ money was diverted."

Finance Minister Buggana Rajendranath and Special Chief Secretary (Finance) Rawat did not respond to calls or messages for a clarification on the issue.

Published on June 30, 2022
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