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Telangana: Big officials fall for car money

Posted August 11th, 2017, 10:53 AM IST

Telangana: Big officials fall for car money

Hyderabad: The government’s policy to provide hired vehicles to officers has turned into a goldmine for some of them.

The government has to provide vehicles for the IAS officers from the level of deputy secretary upwards and to those working in the heads of department offices and in the districts.

As it does not have a sufficient number of vehicles, the government rents vehicles from private agencies to supply these officials. It pays Rs 34,000 a month per vehicle.

Some officers are cashing in on this. They purchase vehicles in the name of their family members and tie up with a private travel agency or individual. They then get these vehicles hired by the government and use them, a senior officer of the finance department said.

Of the Rs 34,000 that the government pays, the private agency deducts about Rs 15,000 according to the deal and pays the remaining amount to the officer. The officer uses the money to pay the EMI for the vehicle.

Though they are entitled to get a loan from the government to purchase the vehicle, these officers prefer to borrow from commercial banks. The loan given by the government would be in their name, and they want to avoid entering the record.

The officer said it would cost the government more to purchase vehicles, recruit drivers and pay for insurance, maintenance and part replacements. Simply paying the rent is cheaper, he said.

He said the department did not have the data on the number of hired vehicles and expenditure on rentals. The departments pay for the vehicles from their budget.

Another officer said that though the monthly limit was 25,000 km, many officers travelled only about 1,000 km. He said if the government reduced the 25,000 km limit to 15,000 km the rentals would reduce and government could save some money.

The scam
Some officials buy vehicles in the name of their family members.
They tie up with a private agency, which signs a deal with the government to rent the vehicle.
The officer then uses the vehicle, which the government pays for.