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India


Congress slams govt over misappropriation in MGNREGA funds

Congress slams govt over misappropriation in MGNREGA funds

New Delhi, Aug 21 (UNI) Congress on Saturday slammed government over reports of a Rs 935 Crore misappropriation in the Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment Guarantee Act (MGNREGA).
According to a report, Social Audit Units under Rural Development Departments across India found financial misappropriation of Rs 935 crore under various schemes of MNREGA.
Congress Spokesperson Pawan Khera said one of the most significant findings of the audit carried out in 2.65 lakh Gram Panchayats across all states and union territories was that the primary type of misappropriation in most cases was “financial misappropriation” which "includes and is not limited to bribery, payments to non-existent persons, and to vendors at inflated procurement prices".
"Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment Guarantee Act (MGNREGA) was introduced by the UPA Government to eradicate poverty from India, and the current regime through the Prime Minister referred to MGNREGA as a living monument to the failures of the Indian National Congress. MGNREGA became a life saver for the poor and marginalized during the first and second wave of the COVID-19 pandemic," Khera said.
He said the fund misappropriated could have been used for Covid relief.
"The fact that the government has been sleeping over it and has facilitated such large scale misappropriation even more so in the middle of a pandemic where MGNREGA could have been utilized to neutralize the reverse migration phenomenon and resulting economic distress and unemployment," he said.
He said out of Rs 935 crores that have been misappropriated, only 12.5 crores which is 1.34% of the misappropriated amount stands recovered.

"Why is this even significant? Because, this Act, a welfare scheme meant to ensure the welfare of the poor. The very fact that misappropriations have been happening is a testament to the lack of accountability and due diligence by the Modi Government," he said.

National Rural Employment Guarantee Act, later renamed as Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment Guarantee Act" or MGNREGA, was launched in 2005 by the UPA government.
UNI AO SHK1745

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