CAG audit for Rs 88,000 cr rural schemes
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Last Updated: Tuesday, December 13, 2011, 16:09
  
New Delhi: All rural development programmes worth Rs 88,000 crore, including the flagship MNREGA, will come under the audit of the Comptroller and Auditor General of India, Parliament was informed on Tuesday.

"You will be happy that for the first time the government has decided to bring all rural development programmes under CAG audit," Rural Development Minister Jairam Ramesh said in the Rajya Sabha.

He said, "performance audits of the rural development schemes will be carried out in 12 states and special AGs have also been appointed for some states."

The minister was replying to a query by Mohan Singh (SP) whether the Centre has any mechanism to deal with cases where funds are misused in the states.

Ramesh said he had written to Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Mayawati pointing out large misappropriation of funds in seven districts of the state - a comment that evoked sharp reaction from members of BSP, which is in power in the state.

The BSP members charged the UPA with deriving political mileage ahead of the Uttar Pradesh Assembly elections.

After complaints of misuse of central funds in MNREGA scheme, Ramesh said while the Centre had the option to stop release of money, he did not favour it.

For a CBI probe, state government's approval is required and no state government agrees to it. He said the third option evolved then was to hold a CAG audit, after consultations with the auditing watchdog.

On allegations of BSP members that UP was being neglected in Prime Minister Gramin Sadak Yojna (PMGSY), Ramesh said villages with a habitation of up to 999 will be connected to road network under the scheme. After 90 per cent sanction under first phase, habitations ranging between 600 and 799 will be covered, he said.

On demands that villages with up to 500 habitations should be covered under the PMSGY, Ramesh said there was a resource crunch as only Rs 20,000 crore has been allocated for it.

PTI


First Published: Tuesday, December 13, 2011, 14:01


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