Odisha to take action against two IAS officers

The Odisha government has decided to initiate action against two IAS officers for the alleged irregularities in the Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment Guarantee Scheme (MGNREGS) in the state.

According to the recommendation of the Central Bureau of Investigation, action will be taken against Mrinalini Darswal and J B Mishra. The officers had served as collectors of Nuapara district, one of the poorest districts in the country.

The CBI had probed into the irregularities in implementation of the Centre’s flagship poverty eradication programme in six backward districts of Odisha following a directive from the Supreme Court.

The state government’s decision to take action against the two senior officials has already been conveyed to the apex court through an affidavit.

“We have already started proceedings to initiate action against the IAS officers and impose penalties on them as per the law,” state Panchayati Raj Minister Kalpataru Das told reporters here.

Darswal, who is currently on central deputation, has been charged with diverting Rs 253 lakh from the MGNREGS funds for landscaping and develop a lawn at her residential office during her tenure as Nuapara collector.

Mishra, who succeeded Darswal as Nuapara collector, has been charged with trying to cover up the irregularities. The officer is now serving as deputy secretary in a government department here.

Apart from these two IAS officers, the government has also initiated action against 658 others, including both government and non-government officials.

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