AGARTALA, Nov 30 – The Tripura State Employment Guarantee Council (TSEGC) has expressed strong resentment over the sizeable reduction in the MGNREGA outlay for the State during the current financial year (2014-15).
In its meeting under the chairmanship of Chief Minister Manik Sarkar, the TSEGC expressed dismay as the Ministry of Rural Development had earlier approved a labour budget of Rs 1.40 crore for the State during the current financial year for generation of 513 crore person-days.
This labour budget was a reduction from 521.6 crore person-days that were generated in the State during the 2013-14 FY under the scheme. Interestingly, the Rural Development Ministry has indicated that only Rs 652 crore would be made available for the State. “This amount is grossly inadequate to meet the requirements of the rural poor of Tripura. It has caused stress in the rural areas of the State”, said a senior official who attended the meeting held here on Friday.
The TSEGC further noted with concern that even out of this reduced allocation, the release of fund has been very irregular and poor and only 57 per cent of this reduced allocation has been released till date, though all requirements for the release of the entire money has been met by the State.
The Council felt that since it is a legal right given to the poor people of India, it should not be subjected to any budgetary constraint and the Ministry of Rural Development should facilitate in such a way that all eligible persons demanding work are provided employment by the State Government.