Lok Satta Junction

For better governance in India.

Using NREGA for political patronage

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The Congress governments are using the NREGA to benefit their party members and supporters. It has been transformed from a Govt program to a taxpayer funded Congress party program. The party members and their supporters are getting a preference for projects and works allotment.

Union Minister for Rural Development and Panchayati Raj Dr. C.P. Joshi wants to re-constitute the employment guarantee council filling up the 30 member council with Congress members, justifying this by saying, “We cannot give the strength and space to other parties.”

According to Mr. Botsa Satyanarayana, Minister for Panchayati Raj, road and drainage works worth Rs.1200 crore are to be taken up under the NREGS. Zilla parishads are being allotted Rs.700 crore for taking up the rural connectivity project and each mandal praja parishad Rs.50 lakh for taking up internal roads, drains and roads to fields etc. “The works shall be entrusted to the implementation-cum-monitoring committee constituted at the village panchayat level.

Loksatta has taken a strong exception to this move for subverting democracy by moving away from the elected panchayats to implement the projects. After already having faced criticism for scams in INDIRAMMA housing schemes, giving the implementation of crores worth of projects to nominated committees instead of elected panchayats hardly inspires any confidence. We can’t be very far from the truth in guessing it means more money from Govt coffers into party coffers.

Apart from this, it’s an open secret that a disproportionate share of the Govt handouts go to the party supporters, irrespective of which party is in power. And not to the actual people in need. This is a direct consequence of the political party in power having excessive control over the executive. And a weak law enforcement combined with a slow and inefficient judicial process completes the vicious circle.

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Written by jujung

September 19, 2009 at 11:44 AM

Posted in Criticism, politics

Tagged with , , ,

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