But it’s anything but that. A number of people MAIL TODAY spoke to at offices of the revenue department in the city said they would be fools to believe that the certificate would arrive in 21 days. “ They (officials) know how to keep the certificate away from you through objections and layers of official verifications till you give up. I feel these officials are in nexus with the touts,” an applicant alleged, without wishing to be named.
It could be true.
At the revenue department’s office in east Delhi, M AIL T ODAY ran into several touts hanging around the tables occupied by deed writers and typists. In a matter of minutes, this correspondent was approached by a what- can- I- dofor- you tout.
As this reporter was enquiring from officials about the official procedure for obtaining an EWS certificate, the tout boasted how he can get the job done through his “ connections” bypassing the lengthy official procedure.
“ The official process is never ending. People will come to your address to verify all your claims. They will raise all kinds of objections. Most applications take a long time before they are finally accepted — even rejected,” he said, in a manner a salesman woos his customers.
He then delivered a pitch on the benefits of availing his services.
“ The job will be done in less than a week if you get me a telephone or electricity bill, a voter ID or ration card,” he boasted.
It doesn’t matter whether you are eligible or ineligible, poor or well- off.
“ We will take care of the verification process and the attestation of documents. Take my word that verification is as good as done — no one will come to your place to cross- examine you,” he smugly said. “ Get the complete set of documents and we will take it up from there,” he added.
For Rs 5,000, it seemed a good deal.
He also enquired if this correspondent had friends in other parts of the capital who want to apply for the EWS certificate as “ he had contacts in other SDM offices who could get the job done very fast”.
MAIL TODAY ’s on- the- spot inquiry followed a tipoff from an east Delhi resident that touts were virtually calling the shots when it came to distribution of the EWS certificate.
The man — who earns Rs 30,000 per month ( Rs 3.6 lakh annually) and owns a house — himself ‘ purchased’ an EWS certificate by paying a tout in one of the revenue offices in east Delhi. “ I came to know about the illegal practice a couple of months ago when I had to admit my daughter to a nursery school ( Schools set aside seats under EWS quota). To admit my daughter to a particular school, I needed to furnish an EWS certificate. An admission supervisor then told me how I could get it,” Sanjeev Singh ( name changed) said.
“ What is wrong with acquiring the certificate illegally? If I don’t do it someone else will,” he said.
“ I purchased the certificate in the peak admission season. I paid Rs 6,500 and got it in three days. But if you say there is no hurry you can also get it for Rs 4,000,” he said.
There could be thousands of people like him who have obtained the certificate illegally and reaping benefits meant for the poor.
When MAIL TODAY spoke to an SDM, he explained why the touts thrive. He complained that polit- ical bosses only measure their work in terms of “ timely delivery” of services. “ We are criticised for being late in delivering public services. But our political bosses overlook the fact that field visits take time, for example at times the applicant may not be available at home. Such things take time but people want everything very fast, helping touts to flourish,” he complained.
“ Given the ground realities and glaring infrastructural shortages, you can’t have it all,” he said.
It doesn’t matter whether you are eligible or ineligible, poor or well- off. The touts ensure no one verifies your credentials
GETTING AN EWS CERTIFICATE RIGHT WAY:
Go to your local sub- divisional magistrate ( SDM)’ s office
Write an application that you need an EWS certificate. Submit it with an affidavit backing your claims
Attach a copy of your ration card or voter ID card, electricity or telephone bill, documents of property owned or income slips
Certificate is issued after SDM’s office verifies particulars mentioned in application and affidavit.
The process ideally takes 21 days
You pay the tout between Rs 4,000 and Rs 7,000 depending on the urgency and your bargaining skills
Submit the documents required under law but the touts ensure that the verification of the particulars in the application and the affidavit is bypassed
In less than a week, you can collect the certificate from the tout
Free admission in all public and private schools under EWS quota
Students from EWS families can apply to the government’s Lal Bahadur Shastri scholarship for meritorious students, avail uniform subsidy and a ‘ book bank’ scheme
EWS patients can avail free treatment and have reserved beds in government’s announced list of private hospitals in the capital
EWS category individuals in a certain age group can avail funds from government’s flagship scheme, the Pradhan Mantri Rozgar Yojna ( PMRY) which gives funds from Rs 2 lakh to Rs 5 lakh for setting up selfemployment ventures in pre- listed sectors
The social welfare department has special schemes for women and the girl child from weaker sections of the society including EWS category. EWS category women who give birth to girl child get financial assistance from the government
Reproduced From Mail Today. Copyright 2012. MTNPL. All rights reserved.