BALANGIR: Hunders of villagers, including women of Haladipali panchayat under Muribahal block, recently staged a demonstration demanding payment of wages against the work they had rendered under MGNREGS.
They alleged that they have not been paid their wages since March. “We are tired of running between panchayat and bank as all assurances to pay dues of the last seven months have fallen flat, said a villager who is entitled for some 20 two days of wages. Locals said there are people who fell to the trap of Government propaganda which had assured them jobs under MGNREGS to stop migration.
According to official data, against 2.93 lakh job card holders in Balangir only 97,538 applied for job and 71,341 people were provided work. Only 5,714 families were provided work in October and a mere 1784 persons were provided with more than 100 man-days of job.
Gokul Biswal of Budibahal village under Khaprakhol block said, as he failed to get work under MGNREGS he is forced to migrate with family for a livelihood. Similarly, Upendra Gahir of Bijamal village under Muribahal block said, he has not got the payment of MGNREGA for last four months. “I have no option but to migrate outside State in search of work as I am yet to get my payment against MGNREGA work,” added Upendra.
The problems are more acute in Belpara, Bongamunda, Khaprakhol, Patnagarh and Tureikela blocks which are more migration prone. Muribahal Block Development Officer Nabin Naik said, the office is helpless. “I know they are waiting for money since last six months but I am helpless as there is no fund in our MGNREGS account. This not the problem of Haladi panchayat, the situation is same in other parts of the district.