New Delhi: Voicing concern over alleged
misappropriation of funds meant for rural job guarantee scheme in Orissa, the Supreme Court Monday asked the Centre to expeditiously decide on a CBI probe into the matter.
A bench headed by Chief Justice S H Kapadia made it
clear that if the Centre fails to take a decision within four
weeks, the court would step in.
"We are informed by Additional Solicitor General
(Indira Jaising) that the government is considering to
approach the CBI for conducting the probe. For that purpose,
we are giving four weeks time to the Centre.
"We make it clear that if the Centre does not take any decision, we would step in," the bench said.
The bench said the reports show that there is massive
misappropriation of funds to the tune of 88 per cent in some
districts of the state.
"Reports of CAG as well as of National Institute of
Rural Development NIRD shows misappropriation of funds
allegedly by officials and functionaries of the implementation
agencies, resulting in diversion of funds of honest tax payers
of the nation."
The court issued the directions, while hearing a
public interest lawsuit filed in 2007 by an NGO, Centre for
Environment and Food Security, alleging large-scale corruption
in the implementation of the programme for rural job under
Mahatama Gandhi National Rural Employment Guarantee Act.
Based on the National Rural Employment Guarantee Act
(MNREGA) in 2005, the scheme provides for legally-guaranteed
100 days of employment to at least one member of each rural