No NREGS fund diversion: Govt

Bhubaneswar: Refuting allegation by Centre for Environment and Food Security (CEFS) that MGNREGA fund was diverted in the state, state government on Wednesday said it had taken action against persons found guilty of indulging in irregularities.

The state government, which had been accused by CEFS of misapproprating MGNREGA fund to the tune of Rs 600 crore, submitted an affidavit to the Supreme Court clarifying its stand on the controversy, Chief Secretary, B K Patnaik told reporters here.

"The state government today submitted its affidavit in the Apex Court and made it clear that adequate measures had been taken to prevent irregularities in the implementation of the MGNREGA," he said.

Admitting that some irregularities were detected during initial phase of implementation of the rural job scheme, Patnaik said both viligance department and panchayati raj department had enquired into certain allegations in connection with the MGNREGS.

As many as 600 cases were probed by the state government after it came to know about certain irregularities in the scheme, Patnaik said adding that the state government`s affidavit to the Supreme Court explained detail about the trasnparancy being maintained in it.

The state government had taken action against some panchayat functionaries and even dismissed some government officials after allegation of irregularities were proved by departmental inqueries, Patnaik said.

State government`s 500-page affidavit also highlighted how the administration kept things open and transparent by making payments to beneficiaries through bank accounts.

Rejecting allegation that MGNREGA funds were diverted to other sectors, the chief secretary said several measures were taken in order to make it fault free.