Jammu: An organisation representing the panchayats on Saturday said the approval of a development fund of Rs 10 lakh for each panchayat on yearly basis was an outcome of its efforts and the Jammu and Kashmir government was "misleading" people by taking credit for the project.
"We strongly object to state Rural Development Minister, Ali Mohammad Sagar`s statement that the amount was being given to panchayats due to the efforts of Chief Minister Omar Abdullah. The statement was misleading and beyond facts," All Jammu and Kashmir Panchayat Conference (AJKPC) Chairman, Shafiq Mir said in a statement here.
"In fact, the Panchayat development fund was demanded by the AJKPC delegation during its meeting with Congress Vice President Rahul Gandhi in Delhi on September 27, 2012," he said.
A written proposal was given to Rahul by AJKPC delegation in which Rs 10 lakh for each Panchayat was demanded and same was agreed by him during the meeting, he said.
"I wonder despite knowing the facts, how J&K rural development minister was misleading the masses", Mir said.
During his visit to Badgam in connection with the launch of UMEED project, Rahul had announced Rs 10 lakh for each panchayat as development fund on June 15, 2013 in the presence of Union Rural Development minister Jairam Ramesh, Mir said.
Rahul had asked Ramesh to release the amount at earliest.
"It is unfortunate that despite knowing the facts state minister was misleading the public in general and Panchayat members in particular to gain sympathy of panchayats for the upcoming assembly elections," Mir said.