Monday, August 15, 2022

Par panel questions govt on MGNREGA implementation

A parliamentary panel has stated that the situation is not so “‘rosy” on ground zero as depicted by the government on the implementation of MGNREGA as there are issues like fake job cards and money changing hands for showing an inflated list of beneficiaries.
The report was tabled by the parliamentary standing committee on Rural Development on Wednesday in Lok Sabha. In its response, the Ministry of Rural Development stated that all complaints received in the ministry are forwarded to the state governments and UTs concerned for taking appropriate action.
The panel said the scheme acquires paramount importance in terms of monitoring and surveillance “so that even the single penny of taxpayers’ account does not get misused through the nexus of unscrupulous and conniving officials of Gram Panchayats.”
“The situation is not so ‘rosy’ as depicted by the Department of Rural Development in reflecting through its data that only 45 number of complaints on irregularities in MGNREGA Scheme and 28 number of complaints under the misuse of funds have been received so far,” the report states.
It says this seems to be very far from the reality as “instances are galore of issues of fake job cards, increased number of job cards than the beneficiaries, money changing hands for commission for showing a fake list of beneficiaries and obtaining the total amount by the erring officials at different levels of implementation of the scheme.”
In its reply, the ministry has said that steps have been taken to strengthen transparency and accountability which include geo-tagging, Direct Benefit Transfer (DBT), National electronic Fund Management System (Ne-FMS), Aadhaar Based Payment System (ABPS) and other such measures.
It also includes independent social audit units and the appointment of an Ombudsman in the states. State-specific reviews of states are also undertaken from time to time.


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