Unable to pay bribe to babu, Rajasthan villagers offer kids as ‘collateral’

There was quite a stir until late at night on Wednesday when the children sat on the floor inside the tehsildar’s office with placards in their hands.
Image for representational purpose only. ( Express Illustration)
Image for representational purpose only. ( Express Illustration)

JAIPUR:  Rajasthan Chief Minister Ashok Gehlot’s home district Jodhpur has reported a strange case. A family of farmers in Phalodi town has accused the tehsildar (revenue official) of demanding a bribe of Rs 2 lakh and left its children as “collateral” at the official’s office until the bribe was arranged.

There was quite a stir until late at night on Wednesday when the children sat on the floor inside the tehsildar’s office with placards in their hands. The sub-divisional officer’s arrival at the tehsildar’s 
office prompted the authorities to send the children back to their homes.

The administration has filed a case against the family members under the Juvenile Justice Act. The incident took place at the Phalodi tehsil office around 2 pm on Wednesday. Reports said a land case involving a farmer, Shyamlal Bishnoi, has been going on since 1998, for which the land was marked for distribution among 14 farmers.

Thirteen of those farmers along with their nine children reached the tehsildar’s office on Wednesday. They alleged that after the distribution of the land, they were supposed to get ownership rights, but the tehsildar demanded a bribe of Rs 2 lakh each. As the farmer family did not have the money needed to pay the hefty bribe, they left their children as ‘hostages’ of the official.

On the other hand, tehsildar Hukmichand has denied the allegations and called them baseless. He said after the court order, they had gone with the team to do the primary degree (PD) of the land on Tuesday, but the farmers obstructed the work by raising slogans during the PD action. As a result of their protests, no action was taken. The next day, the farmers left their children at the tehsil office. The district administration has now ordered a detailed probe into the matter.

Probe ordered
The incident took place at the Phalodi tehsil office in a land case involving farmers who alleged that the tehsildar demanded a bribe to give them ownership rights of their land. Tehsildar Hukmichand has denied the charges and called them baseless. The administration has ordered a probe into the matter

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