Probe panel suspects MCG may have ghost employees

The Municipal Corporation of Gurugram (MCG)-appointed committee investigating the appointment of 1,756 outsourced employees since November last year has received replies from only 1,300 employees so far, raising suspicions of the presence of ghost employees, said officials of the civic body on Friday.

A ghost employee is a term used for a person who draws salary without actually working in an organisation, with the authorities being unknown of his or her existence.

RS Rathee, head of the MCG-appointed committee, said that he has issued the seventh reminder to the heads of all wings in the MCG, such as the engineering wing, the horticulture wing, the tax wing and the planning wing, to direct their remaining outsourced employees to present themselves before the committee for investigation within the coming week.

Otherwise, a final report on the matter will be submitted to the officials of the Urban Local Bodies (ULB) and presented before the next MCG house meeting for its perusal.

“We are yet to receive information of nearly 500 employees. We have given them a week’s time to come forward. Otherwise, we will submit our findings to the MCG and the ULB who can subsequently investigate the status of the missing employees. While there may be a few employees who have simply decided not to turn up for the investigation, we suspect that there could be many posts that have been filled by ghost employees who are drawing salary sanctioned by the MCG each month,” said Rathee.

In a house meeting in January last year, while referring to the possibility of ghost employees being found in the Municipal Corporation of Delhi (MCD) and improprieties observed in their hiring process, Rathee had asked the MCG to verify its outsourced staff on these aspects as well.

In October last year, the MCG had formed a five-member committee consisting of MCG councillors, RS Rathee, Ravinder Yadav, Brham Prakash, Sanjay Pradhan and Subhash Singla to look into the matter.

In February this year, the Haryana Crime Investigation Department (CID) contacted members of the committee and procured details of outsourced employees.

“Transparency is of utmost importance in the MCG. The heads of each wing have been asked to direct the remaining outsourced employees to present themselves before the committee for an interview. If ghost employees and irregularities are found, then necessary action will be taken against such employees,” said Yashpal Yadav, commissioner of the Municipal Corporation of Gurugram.

Apart from 456 employees not being accounted for, other discrepancies such as the hiring of incompetent workers, the appointment of multiple workers against one vacant post, disproportionate distribution of workers across departments, and unnecessary posts have surfaced during the seven-month investigation, said Rathee.

For instance, there are two computer clerks working on a single post. The number of outsourced employees in the horticulture wing is 15 in zones 1 and 2 but 85 in zones 3 and 4(nearly six times more).

In January, Vivek Kalia, former joint commissioner of MCG, had written to the present MCG commissioner Yashpal Yadav, asking for a complete overhaul in the manner such outsourced employees are hired by the civic body.

This happened after no action was taken against illegal constructions despite repeated reminders.

Earlier in the month of May this year, the MCG had also initiated an inquiry against 15 of its outsourced employees in its water division for not showing up for work.

The civic body also withheld their salaries until the investigation process was completed.

First Published: Jun 02, 2019 02:37 IST

Updated: June 2, 2019 — 4:40 am