DHULA, May 18 – The District Rural Development Agencies or DRDAs are likely to be dissolved. Talks between the Centre and the State on this matter are in progress. Even though talks are yet to reach the final stage, the possibility of dissolving the DRDA system and merging it with the Zila Parishads could not be ruled out, said Rockybul Hussain, Minister for Panchayat & Rural Development, Forest and Environment, Govt of Assam.
While talking to this correspondent after addressing a public rally on Saturday at Dhula, Hussain further said the matter of dissolving the DRDAs has no connection with the introduction of the new central scheme National Rural Livelihood Mission (NRLM) in the State. According to him, NRLM will be introduced in Assam very soon covering all the development blocks but initially the scheme will be implemented in a few development blocks on an experimental basis.
Earlier addressing the public rally the minister said that with the introduction of NRLM there will be an economic revolution in the State through the Self Help Groups (SHGs). He also informed the public that his department is very keen to check corruption and bring transparency in different rural development schemes for which he has issued strict instructions to hold two sets of social audit one in the month of October and the other in the month of April in each and every panchayats of the State. Moreover to ensure due wages to every job card labourers under MGNREGA the department has already introduced the new ‘biometric card’ system for wage payments. The minister as usual in his speech publicly threatened the corrupt officials of his Rural Development Department of stern action if charges against them have been proved. In his speech he also highlighted different development schemes like DDP, Fourth Assam State Finance Commission, IAY etc to be implemented in the district in coming time for which the Government has already sanctioned an amount of about Rs 35 crore.
The public rally was also addressed by Basanta Das, Minister for Fishery, Printing, I & PR Department while Victor Carpenter, Chief Executive Officer, Darrang Zila Parichad explained the objective of the meeting . Ilias Ali, Parliamentary Secretary , Sohrab Ali , Deputy Commissioner, Darrang, Sheela Saharia, i/c president, Darrang Zila Parishad and Padma Nath Das, PD, DRDA, Darrang also attended the function as the distinguished guests. The Ministers also ceremonially distributed cheques to the beneficiaries under he Indira Gandhi Rastriya Bikalanga Pension scheme.
It may be mentioned that before addressing the public rally Hussain laid the foundation stone of the proposed multi-purpose buliding near Pub Mangaldai development block, Dhula at an estimated cost of Rs 1.25 crore under Assam State Finance Commission. Similarly foundation stone of the proposed office buliding of Dalgaon- Sialmari Anchalik Panchayat at an estimated cost of Rs 28 lakh under Assam State Finance Commission was also laid by Hussain on the day.