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‘MGNREGA fails to gain momentum in Bihar’

MGNREGA has not gained momentum in Bihar as the percentage of household provided 100 days employment ranged from one to seven per cent during 2007-12, according to a CAG report submitted to the state assembly on Thursday.

A performance audit on MGNREGA found that Bihar was deprived of grant of Rs 9684.24 crore during 2007-12 in the shape of central share due to less creation of mandays, sharp increase in demand for fund without sufficient justification and unspent balance grant, said the report.

The report was prepared after conducting survey in 319 units in 15 districts, 54 blocks and 250 gram panchayats for the period ending on 31 March, 2012. Accountant general of Bihar B K Singh later told reporters that there was decreasing trend in providing jobs under the scheme from 75 per cent (2007-08) to 20 per cent (2011-12).

It also found that number of registered households reported to the government was inflated and households were issued more than one job cards. Bihar government launched MGNREGA, the biggest anti-poverty programme in 23 districts in 2006 with central government funding.

Simultaneously it launched the Bihar Rural Employment Guarantee Scheme (BREGS) in the remaining 15 districts with the state government funding. In the second phase from April 2007, the scheme was rolled out across the state with central funding.

On issuance of more than one job card to households, the report found that more than one job card, which is a legal document for demanding job, was issued to 2849 households particularly in the eight districts including Madhubani Muzaffarpur, Jehanabad, Bhabua, Darbhanga, Bhojpur, Begusarai and West Champaran.

In some cases, even three or four job cards were issued to a single person/household in violation of the Act, the CAG report said.

In a beneficiary survey of 1997 beneficiaries, photographs were not found affixed in 37 per cent job cards and in 26 per cent cases payment of wages entered in the job cards did not tally with the amount credited into their accounts.

The report further pointed out that the state government failed in utilising available grants and unspent balance ranged from 26 to 40 per cent during 2007-12. At the same time liability of Rs 79.54 crore on account of payment of wage and pending material bill was created.
Agencies

Agencies

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