(NEWS) National Rural Employment Guarantee Scheme (NREGS) comes to Bundelkhand

From January 1, the state’s Department of Rural Development will ensure that the National Rural Employment Guarantee Scheme (NREGS) is used as an effective tool to bring relief in the drought-hit Bundelkhand region.

Instead of waiting for the new financial year, which begins in April, the department will start relief measures immediately along with plans to provide job to each household in the region.

The move is being taken keeping in mind the relief measures announced as a part of the Bundelkhand rehabilitation package by Chief Minister Mayawati recently. The region has been reeling under drought from the last several years.

Talking to The Indian Express, Principal Secretary (rural development) Rohit Nandan said: “We understand that schemes like the NREGS can indeed go a long way in providing relief to the people in Bundelkhand region. And hence, we want to ensure that every household at least has one working hand in 2008. There are a number of tasks, which can be undertaken in this region, which will not only provide employment, but also bring about a difference in the region. The department has chalked out a plan, which will become functional from tomorrow.”

He added, “We will ensure that there is a job card in each household and at least one person is working. We have instructed all officials concerned that they should ensure that all tasks involving water restructuring and water conservation should be undertaken as a part of the NREGS programme.”

The department also plans to ensure that in every gram panchayat, some work or the other is going on to ensure that one person in each household has a job. Nandan said, “With an income of Rs 100 per day, at least the people will not die of poverty and hunger.”

Meanwhile, the Congress’ NREGS cell has alleged that the state government is showing a lax attitude towards the implementation of the scheme. The secretary of the NREGS cell, Sanjay Dixit, said: “The government has failed to use the amount of money released by the Centre under the scheme.”

Courtesy: http://www.expressindia.com