Salaries of officials in Odisha's Koraput district have been withheld for their failure to utilise 60 per cent of the funds allocated under MGNREGS. The district administration has decided to withhold salaries of junior engineers (JEs) and gram panchayat technical assistants (GPTAs) for their failure, Koraput district collector Yamini Sarangi said today.
"We are committed to creating more jobs in rural Koraput (utilising MGNREGS). This move (withholding of salaries) is an effort in that direction," Sarangi said. Implementation of the scheme was reviewed recently in 14 blocks. "It was found that Koraput, Jeypore and Semiliguda blocks had utilised only 30 per cent of the MGNREGS funds. A directive has been issued to withhold salaries of JEs and GPTAs of these three blocks," she said.
Bandhugaon and Narayanpatna blocks, where development had taken a beating in the past few years due to Maoist violence, have utilised 55 per cent and 47 per cent of the funds respectively, she added. Official sources said the district targets to spend Rs 95 crore by creating 33 lakh man days during this financial year. It has spent around Rs 20 crore till July-end and generated eight lakh man-days.
In April and May, the district had utilised around Rs 8 crore. But with constant monitoring, we could take it to Rs 12 crore in June-July. "We are hopeful of achieving the target by the financial year end," she added.