Rashid Paul

HC seeks response from RDD officials

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Alleged favour to PDP leader?

Srinagar November 02: The High Court on Friday sought response from Commissioner Secretary Rural Development Department and his subordinate officers about the allegations of favors to a Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) leader from South Kashmir in violation of Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment Guarantee Act (MNREGA) rules.

A Division Bench of Justices Ali Mohammad Magrey and Rashid Ali Dar sought response from Commissioner Secretary Rural Development Department (RDD), Director RDD Kashmir, Assistant Commissioner Development Anantnag, Block Development Officer Srigufwara and block president PDP Bijbehara to the pleas of petitioners by next date of hearing.

The petitioners alleged that the authorities are following the dictates of the PDP block president in violation of the provisions of Panchayat Raj Act and the very objective and purpose of MNREGA.

This has resulted in severe adverse effects on the role and functions of the constitutional and legal functionaries and that there is total loot and khasoot of public money, they petitioned.

They stated before the court that the respondents are having large budgetary allocation under MNREGA for development of the rural areas and for providing guaranteed jobs to the rural population.

After the allocation of funds to the Panchayat Halqa, Gram Sabha of a Panchayat Halqa meet on spot is held to finalize the list of developmental works to be undertaken in a particular financial year, they said.

That after allocation of the funds to the petitioners’ village for the financial year 2017-18 under the MNREGA the respondents called a meeting of Gram Sabha in the petitioners’ village.

A list of 100 developmental works was finalized and identified  with respect to the rural connectivity and micro-irrigation in the village with the consensus that the works will be taken in the order of priorities to be decided subsequently in Gram Sabha, they added.

Under the said Act, it is submitted that the most powerful and important Panchayat Raj Institution is the Halqa Majlis (Gram Sabha) which is constituted by all the voters of the Panchayat Halqa and the officials have to follow the decisions taken by the Gram Sabha while implementing the various centrally sponsored schemes including MNREGA, the petitioners informed the court.

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