Editorial : BISP backtrack Saturday, April 16, 2011

The manner in which scams and scandals lurk almost everywhere has been exposed by the fact that the Benazir Income Support Programme organisation has taken a hasty U-turn on the matter of 100 illegal appointments made in the organisation by forging documents. Chairperson of the BISP Farzana Raja had just days ago defended the appointments. But the winds appear to have changed rather quickly following the publication last week of a story by this paper on the issue. An officer, whose signatures had been forged and placed on the appointment letters has also approached the court. The officer it seems is now being victimised while the BISP media director now tells us the appointments were cancelled as they had not been approved by the management. The affair reflects just how bad things. Organisation after organisation has been destroyed by the favouritism that steals money away from rightful use and places it in the laps - or more realistically speaking, the bank accounts – of the undeserving. We are told that the president had been briefed about the appointments. He obviously thought it unnecessary to interfere. This is hardly surprising given the conduct of the top PPP leadership on a whole range of similar matters. The reality is that corruption has become endemic, infiltrating every nook and cranny of our country. What is worse still is that those who attempt to thwart it, or at least refuse to indulge in wrongdoings themselves, are punished like the officer who declined to assist with the appointments.

The failure of top officials to react, even with embarrassment, when such deeds are exposed, makes matters worse still. Conscience everywhere appears to be diminishing rapidly. The BISP is a programme intended to help the poorest of the poor. Instead, like so much else, it seems to have become a way to benefit the powerful and allow them to buy over cronies in all kinds of places and win favours by offering bribes. Other programmes, it seems, are being taken along that same road by those responsible for running them. We must be thankful that in this case, as a result of reporting and the actions of an officer, a crime has been prevented. But in other places, malpractice of all kinds continues. It is possible that some of it goes unnoticed despite the vigilance of the media and also the courts. This is nothing less than a true tragedy which affects all of us adversely, highlighting the sorry plight of our nation.

Source : http://thenews.com.pk/TodaysPrintDetail.aspx?ID=41879&Cat=8

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