Over 4.5 lakh 'paper toilets' worth Rs 540 crore identified to be built across Madhya Pradesh (MP) are found to be missing. Although the loos' photographs are geo-mapped and submitted to the government authorities, the scamsters managed to beat technology to siphon off funds designated for building the toilets.
The privies were supposed to have been officially constructed between 2012 and October 2018, but they don't exist anywhere on the ground. Officials are of the view that the photographs, which were submitted as proof, were snapped someplace else to exhibit that the money was spent on toilet construction.
Not only do their homes have loos on official records but the government portal shows them standing before toilets as well. However, officials eventually found out that all four were clicked in front of a neighbour's toilet.
This disclosure has set the alarm bells ringing with the panchayat and rural development authorities detecting 4.5 lakh such missing 'paper toilets' to the tune of Rs 540 crore across the state.
When asked about how the fraudsters managed to surpass technology since Swachh toilet photos were GPS-tagged, Tiwari explained that the GPS was precise up to six metres and most likely the pictures of toilets within the six-metre range were uploaded in the name of beneficiaries or the pictures constructed before 2012 were uploaded.