CAG report on MNREGA by December: Jairam

In a bid to step up vigilance of the rural job scheme, chartered accountants will also go through MNREGA records and physical verification will be carried out at 10-15 locations

New Delhi: The Comptroller and Auditor General (CAG)  is expected to present the report of the first ever audit of rural job scheme - Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment Guarantee Act (MNREGA) - in December, Rural Development Minister Jairam Ramesh told the Lok Sabha on Thursday, reports PTI.

Replying to supplementaries, Ramesh admitted to have received complaints from several quarters over irregularities in the implementation of MNREGA in some states.

In a bid to step up vigilance of the rural job scheme, the minister said Chartered Accountants will also go through MNREGA records and physical verification will be carried out at 10-15 locations, he said.

Ramesh said physical verification of MNREGA records was being carried out in the wake of complaints received from some states of fake job cards being issued to rural job seekers.

The minister also dismissed as "totally unfounded" concerns expressed by some members that MNREGA scheme has had a negative impact on the availability of labourers for the agriculture sector.

"I wish to categorically state that these fears are totally unfounded. 70% of MNREGA employments are done during the agriculture off-season," he said.

Ramesh said on the contrary MNREGA enrolments had taken a dip in 2011-12 when the country witnessed a good monsoon, indicating many rural job seekers had opted to work on farms.

The minister said 30 new works, including 22 linked to agriculture sector, have been added to the MNREGA list as per suggestions received by Chhattisgarh, Madhya Pradesh, Kerala, Bihar and Uttar Pradesh among others.


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Scope for discussion on TRAI order on TV ads: Government

TV channels could also approach new TRAI chairman Rahul Khullar

New Delhi: With broadcasters slamming the Telecom Regulatory Authority of India's (TRAI) recent order capping television advertisements at 12 minutes per hour, the government on Thursday said there is scope for discussion on the issue, reports PTI.

"(If) Broadcasters are not satisfied, we will sit and discuss...If the ministry feels we should intervene, we will also come," Information and Broadcasting minister Ambika Soni said.

She said channels could also approach new TRAI chairman Rahul Khullar, once he takes over.

"When the new chairman comes, Broadcasters have all the freedom to go and meet him," Soni said.

A notification issued by TRAI on Monday, which was also the last day in office of outgoing chairman JS Sarma, limited the amount of advertising on TV channels and disallowed any shortfall in a particular hour to be carried over.

According to industry estimates, this could impact advertising revenues of broadcasters by 15-40%.




5 years ago

Will it be judicially decent (and whether legally provided in the relevant Act) for the new incumbent to sit in judgement over the statutory decision of his predecessor UNLESS the previous order suffers from serious miscarriage of justice inter alia by ignoring the principles of natural justice or is legally "perverse" ? If this is once done, it will become a precedent. I think, it is well established law, as also pronounced by the Supreme Court, that, a statutorily passed valid order remains operative unless declared invalid by a "superior court". The minister's aides would appear to be ignorant of the judicial discipline and principle inter alia that a "coordinate" authority exercising the same statutory powers and are the the authority cannot sit in judgement over the decision of another, both being the creature of the same Act.

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