Shimla: The State Government has allowed the unemployed rural persons willing to work in their individual land under MNREGA, even if the work was not in the approved shelf of projects approved by the Gram Sabhas. This was stated by Chief Minister Jai Ram Thakur while presiding over the review meeting of Rural Development and Panchayati Raj Department here today. He said that total expenditure of Rs. 859 crore have been incurred thereby generating 260 lakhs persondays during last financial year whereas Rs. 54 crore have been spent and 22 lakh persondays were generated under MNREGA during current financial year so far.
Chief Minister said that the Rural Development Department has also issued instructions regarding maintenance of PWD roads under MNREGA besides tranches of Jal Shakti Vibhag. He said that in order to ensure transparency in the works of MNREGA, the department has implemented SECURE software. He said that 100 percent payments regarding works under MNREGA has been implemented through DBT. He said for work site facilities homemade protective face cover, soap and water were being provided to MNREGA workers. He said that 12835 MNREGA workers registered with Buildings and Other Construction Workers Welfare Board had completed 90 days.
Jai Ram Thakur said that the department has created a Quality Control Cell under MNREGA in order to improve the quality of works executed under the scheme. He said that Ombudsman have been appointed in six districts viz. Bilaspur, Hamirpur, Kangra, Mandi, Shimla and Solan, while the remaining Ombudsman would be appointed soon.
Chief Minister said that under the Mukhya Mantri Awas Yojna 610 houses have been constructed during last financial year and target has been fixed to construct 998 houses during the current financial year to facilitate poor people. He said that in order to improve quality of houses to be constructed under various housing schemes, the department was also planning to impart rural mason training to the interested persons.
Jai Ram Thakur said that the State Government has launched Mukhya Mantri One Bigha Scheme recently by convergence between National Rural Livelihood Mission and MNREGA. He said that over 2000 Self Help Groups of women have applied under this scheme till date. He said that the government was laying special focus on skilling and placement in the formal sector for rural poor above the minimum wages. He said that under the Project UNNATI target has been fixed to train youth in various new trades such as Fashion Designing, Assistant Hair Stylist, Multi Skill Technician, Dairy Processing Equipments etc.
Chief Minister said that as a special initiative by the State Government under the Swachh Bharat Mission-Gramin, Rs. 23.70 crore have been released to the Jal Shakti Vibhag for establishment of Sewerage Treatment Plants on pilot basis in Thunag, Dharampur and Janjehli in Mandi district and Bangana in Una district. He said that the projects of wayside amenities have been sanctioned in four districts viz. Shimla, Solan, Sirmaur and Una for Rs. one crore each.
While laying stress on enhancing capacities of panchayats for inclusive local governance, Chief Minister said that efforts should be made on optimum utilization of available resources and convergence schemes. He said that the panchayats should also enhance capacities to raise their own sources of revenue.
Rural Development and Panchayati Raj Minister Virender Kanwar said that an effective mechanism should be evolved to check delay in various technical approvals so that works could be started at the earliest. He said that Himachal Pradesh was pioneering State increasing the limit of days from 100 to 120 under MNREGA.
Secretary Rural Development and Panchayati Raj Dr. Sandeep Bhatnagar presented vote of thanks.
Director Rural Development and Panchayati Raj Lalit Jain welcomed the Chief Minister and gave a presentation on various activities of the department.
Chief Secretary Anil Khachi, Principal Secretary Finance Prabodh Saxena and other senior officers were present on the occasion.