State seeks Rs 500 crore under national rural job plan

Chief Minister Jagadish Shettar has urged the Centre to release Rs 500 crore to enable the State to meet the statutory obligations under the Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment Generation Scheme.

Observing that the State was getting step-motherly treatment in getting its due share under the scheme despite positive steps taken to implement the same, Shettar, in a letter to Union Rural Development Minister Jairam Ramesh, said the Centre, which releases funds based on a comparison of actual person days (PD) generated since the beginning of a financial year, has, however, ignored the criteria in State’s case.

Pointing out that Karnataka, which, during April to December 2012, achieved about 40 per cent PDs, but saw a rise to 107 per cent in later months, was, however, not taken into consideration while releasing the second installment, to sustain the momentum achieved.

At present, the State has about Rs 323 crore of pending payments. On record, the State has about Rs 361 crore including recently released Rs 127 crore. But the disbursable funds are hardly Rs 38 crore. Therefore, it would be difficult to pay the labour wages in the remaining days of March, Shettar rued.  Further, in a letter to Union Agriculture Minister Sharad Pawar, Shettar has requested the Centre to immediately sanction relief to areca growers in Uttara Kannada district.

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