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Manipur official contradicts CAG’s dismal report on MGNREGA

IMPHAL: Ten year-old Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment Guarantee Act (MGNREGA) has done wonders in rural areas of Manipur, according to the Principal Secretary Rural Development and Panchayati Raj JC Ramthanga.

He was addressing a State-level orientation programme for journalists here on Thursday. A sum of Rs 277 crore has been sanctioned as Central share for the scheme this year, he informed.

However, the Principal Secretary did not specify on how and where this Centrally sponsored scheme has done wonders and brought smiles to the villagers of the State. The programme was also attended by Rural Development and Panchayati Raj Director Dr K Shyamsunder Singh.

Contradicting his statement, the CAG report which was released here on September 2 clearly reported that “Implementation of MGNREGS failed to create durable assets. There was fund leakages in the form of excess expenditure, abandoned/unfruitful works, wasteful expenditure, suspected misappropriation, etc.”

The report added that job cardholders were deprived in the form of delayed payment of wages and expenditure on material component without corresponding payment on wages.

The State Finance Commission awards and Central Finance Commission awards were beset with financial irregularities which resulted in leakage of funds. Documentation to support utilisation of funds was also deficient, it added.

According to the progress reports (MGNREGS) of Union Ministry of Rural development, around 5,39,390 job cards were issued in Manipur of which 4,15,317 individuals from 4,17,882 households were provided employment. Interestingly, no family was provided 100 days work as stipulated under the scheme.

Source: Assam Tribune

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