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Updated: October 26, 2011 01:54 IST

Mayawati regime winking at rural job scheme fraud: Jairam

K. Balchand
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Union Rural Development Minister Jairam Ramesh. File photo
The Hindu
Union Rural Development Minister Jairam Ramesh. File photo

In letter to CM, he stresses need for CBI probe

Accusing the Mayawati government of directly abetting in embezzlement of funds meant for the Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment Guarantee Scheme, the Centre intends holding a CBI inquiry into the fraud ahead of the Uttar Pradesh Assembly elections.

In a letter to the Chief Minister, Union Rural Development Minister Jairam Ramesh maintained that criminal conspiracies in four districts were as scandalous as was the case of the National Rural Health Mission which the CBI was probing. (A massive scam was reported in the NRMS and two medical officers were killed.)

“The signal that has gone out by the State government's continuing inaction is clear — make money openly, flout all rules and procedures openly and nothing will happen to you if you have the patronage of the ruling establishment in the State,” Mr. Ramesh charged.

Expressing his anguish, Mr. Ramesh told Ms. Mayawati that the implementation of the MGNREGS was far from satisfactory. “Many serious and, in fact, brazen violations and cases of deliberate embezzlement of funds have come to the notice” of the Ministry from time to time,

The State ignored taking action on 22 reports of the National Level Monitors (NLMs) which highlighted grave irregularities, Mr. Ramesh said. The State Quality Monitor's report on the districts of Sonbhadra, Mirzapur, Kushinagar and Sant Kabeernagar was also swept under the carpet.

Mr. Ramesh regretted that no action had been taken to probe the disproportionate assets or criminal liabilities of officials though some of them seemed to have been placed under suspension. He underlined that more than Rs. 5,000 crore had been earmarked as the labour budget for the current financial year towards wage payments in the State.

While pointing out that the Centre could not keep silent on the loss of its money, Mr. Ramesh said he would not stop release of funds as doing so would only harm the poor for the crimes committed by officials at various levels and their political patrons.

Favours CBI probe

As an alternative, he was in favour of having the fraud investigated by the CBI. He hoped that the State government would give its concurrence, if it had “nothing to hide and had a clear conscience,” to get the irregularities that hit the scheme in Balrampur, Gonda, Mahoba, Sonbhadra, Sant Kabeernagar, Mirzapur, and Kushinagar districts brought to light.

In Tamilnadu I witness the MNREGS is conducted in better manner with the lowest siphoning of funds. The output by the villagers is deplorable; it is a excursion to the workspot to loiter and leisurely talk other members, but the caste barrier is broken down. Every women runs to make a card for herself and demand work to get the wages which supplement the income of the household. The same villagers grumble during the seasonal agricuture work about the lack of interest from anyone to come for planting, sowing, removing weeds, etc. One side free money from MNREGS is helpful to the really poor but the cost has doubled for agricultural work and there is a shortage of labour too. Looks like MNREGS is a double-edged sword.

from:  chandrasekar
Posted on: Nov 26, 2011 at 08:15 IST

Survey was conducted during May-June 2007 by Delhi-based Centre for Environment and Food Security (CEFS) to assess and evaluate the performance of National Rural Employment Guarantee Scheme (NREGS) in the state of Orissa. The survey was carried out in 100 villages spread over six districts of KBK (Kalahandi-Bolangir-Koraput) region, namely; Bolangir, Nuapada, Kalahandi, Koraput, Nabarangpur and Rayagada. About 75 per cent of the NREGA funds spent in Orissa have been siphoned and pocketed by the government officials and this loot has been very participatory and organised. What do we learn from this? Why the Central Government is remaining silent on this report? Why action should not be taken on Central Minister who is sleeping over the matter in respect of happening all over the country. He is now awake because UP election is likely soon. Let the civil society take such issues for their continued silence on fraud. Whether the Prime Minister will call for Central Minister explanation.

from:  k.subramanian
Posted on: Oct 27, 2011 at 13:15 IST

Another scam, another probe, another report- result is clear: No Action. Mayawati will uphold dalit card and rahul gandhi and team will cry like babies. All this at common mans expenses. Subbarao and team will increase 0.50% repo and reverse repo to curb inflation [i believe in Indian dictionary Inflation should mean- bring back money into public system by doing scam and conducting yatras to cover up]. Since in next couple of days/ months when "judicial delay is going to be thing of past" we can see mayawati and the entire politicians behind bars [joke of the day]. anna still in maun vrat. me too....

from:  Sumesh R Bhat
Posted on: Oct 27, 2011 at 12:22 IST

There is no end to scams and mega scams in India. How much work load pressure is being put on CBI without any tangible results.Why not just put Mayawati and her known gang behind bars start investigations from that point.

from:  Avinash
Posted on: Oct 26, 2011 at 09:00 IST

What kind of ministers we do have? A Minister of the department putting his argument in media. Mr. Jairam will you conduct the investigation through media or departmentally and take decision accordingly. In fact all these you were playing power game to fool public through media. You do have authority to conduct enquiry and take decision.

Posted on: Oct 26, 2011 at 08:16 IST

Hand over the state of UP to Nitish Kumar temporarily. Confiscate the properties of those that siphoned money and punish them. The money has to come back to those it was meant for one way or the other.

from:  meeta
Posted on: Oct 26, 2011 at 03:45 IST

This is the reason for non- development of U.P. I hope Mr. Jai Ram Ramesh will not leave the State Government to allow the looting of Money meant for the poor. Find ways and means to ensure that the funds reaches the beneficiaries under MGNERGS .

from:  N.Thirunavukkarasu
Posted on: Oct 26, 2011 at 00:13 IST
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