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'Model' Villages on Standby as MPs Stay Tightfisted

Published: 01st February 2015 06:14 AM  |   Last Updated: 01st February 2015 06:14 AM   |  A+A-

NEW DELHI:Most of the members of 16th Lok Sabha have taken the bus to the village under Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s ambitious ‘develop a model village’ scheme. However, despite adopting one to develop it as ‘model village’, they have not started utilising the funds under Member of Parliament Local Area Development (MPLAD) scheme. According to the data compiled by the Ministry of Programme Implementation, only around eight percent of 16th Lok Sabha members have allocated funds from their MPLAD Scheme.

Lok Sabha members are entitled to recommend works for the development of their selected constituency and identify the village to develop as a model village from Member of Parliament Local Area Development Scheme (MPLADS). Under the scheme, each MP has the choice to make suggestions to the District Collector for the works to the tune of Rs 5 crore per annum to be taken up in his or her constituency.

Though the Government of India has released Rs 1242.50 crore for MPLAD Scheme to the Lok Sabha members, an amount of Rs 110 crore has been recommended by MPs and expenditure incurred, to the tune of Rs 22.57 crore as on January 1. As per the latest data from the Ministry of Rural Development, out of 543 Lok Sabha members, 479 Lok Sabha members have adopted the village and 64 Lok Sabha MPs are yet to identify the villages to be adopted by them.

After the constitution of the 16th Lok Sabha, the first instalment of Members of Parliament Local Area Development Scheme was released in favour of all the newly elected members. Even after seven months, most of the new members are yet to recommend the works under the MPLAD Scheme.

According to the data available with the Ministry of Programme Implementation, out of the 80 Lok Sabha members in Uttar Pradesh, only Mathura MP Hema Malini had recommended works to the tune of Rs 1.80 crore under MPLAD Scheme. Prime Minister Narendra Modi, who is representing Varanasi, is yet to recommend works under MPLADS. Similarly Congress president Sonia Gandhi, vice president Rahul Gandhi, Samajwadi chief Mulayam Singh Yadav and Union Ministers from Uttar Pradesh are yet to recommend the works under the scheme.

Out of 25 MPs from Andhra Pradesh, only Mithun Reddy, representing Rajampat, had recommended works to the tune of Rs 3.91 crore. No member from Assam, Himachal Pradesh, Jammu and Kashmir,Manipur, Meghalaya, Nagaland, Sikkim, Tripura, Uttarakhand and Jharkhand have recommended works so far.

Four MPs from Bihar, three from Gujarat, only Deepender Singh Hooda from Haryana, five MPs from Karnataka, nine from Kerala including Shashi Tharoor, seven from Madhya Pradesh , 13 MPs including Union Minister Nitin Gadkari from Maharashtra, only Nagendra Kumar Pradhan from Odisha, four from Punjab, Santosh Ahlawat from Rajasthan, 11 MPs from Tamil Nadu, 16 from West Bengal, Delhi MPs Meenakshi Lekhi and Ramesh Bidhuri, Banshilal Mahto from Chattisgarh and Kadiyam Srihari from Telangana have recommended works under MPLADS.

Under MPLAD Scheme funds are non-lapsable. Sources in the Ministry said that sufficient time is consumed in adopting procedures laid down for the start of the work under the scheme. Once MPs recommend works to be undertaken under MPLADS, the concerned district authorities are required to identify the implementing agency capable of executing the eligible work qualitatively, timely and satisfactorily. These authorities are also required to ensure that the recommended works are undertaken in accordance with the financial, technical and administrative rules.

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