PREVIOUS HOUR

2Q/HMS-TDB/5.00

ָ ׮ִԻ ֯ӛ (ִ-׮֤׿֟) : ֳ֬ , ָ ָ ֮ և ӱ֮ - ןָ ֮֋ , ו֮ ֵ֮֮ þ߸ ֤ ֤ , ִ - י , ָ ָ ֤õ ֮ פֵ ֻ ־ ֯ ӓֵ֟ ֵ ״ֻ , ֟ , ӓֵ֟ ֕ ֟ ִ ֳ ִ ֳ , ִ ֳ ָ ׮Ե ִ ֳ ָ ׮֙ظ ָ ױ ֿ ֮֟ ׻֋ ׮־ֵ ֮֮ ִ , -֛ ױ ׮֙ظ - ߮ ֟ ִ ֳ ָ ״ֻ ֮֓ ָ ֟, ׮־ ֕ã֮ þֵ ãֆ ִ ߴ֟ ִ , ׸ִ þֵ ãֆ , 000 ֵ involve ֟ , ֱ ׮֙ظ ׬ָ ָ ֳ ãֆ ֯ և ֋, ׬ָ ֯ ? ֯ -֛ ״ֻ , ֮ ֤֕ ״ֻ ? ֯ ֻ? ׻֋ ֻ ֮ ׬ָ פ ֋ ֯ ׸ ֲ ֵ ײ֮ ׻֋, ִ ֋ ֯ ֮֮ߵ 0 00 ֻ ׮־֙ߕ , , ׮ֵָ ֙ߕ , ִ ֲֻ , ׮: , ֋ ֋Ӆ

ָ ֯ ֟ ָ ֮֮ߵ ֤õ Ԯ ָ 㯟 77 ָ ו , ? ו֮ ָ ״ֻ ֟- ָ ֺ , ִ ָ ָָ ִ ״ֻ ? ָ ? ֻ ״ּ ֙ ִ ׻ֵ ֟ ? ָ ָ ֟- ָ ֺ ֻ , ֳ ָָ, ִ , ֟- ֮ , ִ ֮ ״ֻ ? ֺ ֋ ֣-֣ ֮ ֟- ָ ֺ , ֮֮ ִ , ֻ ֬ ִ߮ -ָ-ӓ ֮ ״ֻ ֲֻ ֮֮ ױ ׾ ֤ ֮֮ ֻ֮ , ֲ ֵ ߴ ״ֻ ? ָ ִ ֟- ֓ , ߴ ״ֻ ָָ 77 ָ ״ֻ , ו֮ 20 ֋ ָ ָ ߾֮-֮֯ ֛ , ֮֟ 㯟 ־ ־ - ֳ ָָ ִ ָ ָ ֮ ״ֻ 77 ָ ֻ ִֻ ׻֋ ָ ֮ ӳ־ ־ֿ ׻֋ Ԯ 㯟 - ֬և , ָ ӡ ִ ן ןֲ֨ , Ӿ-Ӿ ָ ָ֮ ֻ , ָ ֵ֮״ ӡ , ־ ֲ 77 ןֿ֟ ֻ ֮ ״ֻ ו֋ ָ ָ ֮ ֳ פ

֣, ߙظ ׻֋ ֮ ׬ָ ו (2 ָ/֕ ָ ֿ:)

2R/KGG-KLG/5.05

ָ ׮ִԻ ֯ӛ ) : ־ ָ ֵ ֮ -֛ ״ֻ , ֮ ֤֕ ״ֻ ? ֯ ֻ? , ו֮ ֟ , ־ֲ ״ֻ֟ ׻֋ ִֵ֮ ִ , ֛ ֵ , ӿ þ߸ ֤ ߅ ֮־֤ ֵ ֟օ (ִ֯)

THE VICE-CHAIRMAN (PROF. P.J. KURIEN): Thank you, Madam. Now, Mr. Harendra Singh Malik, not here; Shri Sharad Anantrao Joshi, not here; Shri D. Raja, not here; Dr. Radhakant Nayak.

DR. RADHAKANT NAYAK (ORISSA): Thank you very much, Mr. Vice-Chairman, Sir, for this opportunity to speak. Sir, this issue is one of the most outstanding programmes, since Independence, for the poor people of this country. This is also one of the flagship programmes of the UPA Government. Therefore, its importance cannot be diluted by any means and, much less, by both the Central Government and the State Governments. Sir, the points that I would raise, or the issues that I would like to raise, refer to the programme, as it is being implemented, in Orissa. Most of the issues, most of the experiences, that I have brought down to reflect before you and before this august House, come from Orissa. Therefore, unless otherwise mentioned, the reportage refers only to Orissa.

First of all, Sir, both misuse and abuse can be divided into two groups. One could be intentional and the other could be unintentional. Unintentional means, they are basically procedural. But, intentional, is very important and it actually should be taken very seriously by this House and by the Government of India. Very often, Sir, we find that misuse and abuse are very difficult to detect. In that context, I am very grateful to Mr. Narayanasamy that he has brought this issue to be raised here and it is time that we reflect, very seriously, on almost all the issues that have been raised by my other colleagues, in this House, since yesterday, because it is very difficult to detect since abuse and misuse are also inherent in the scheme itself. It is generic. And abuses are also institutionalised, very interestingly. They are very unnoticingly being detected also. But, they are detected with a lot of meticulousness and with a lot of scrutiny only and because of this institutionalised misuse, we need to take everything that is being said in this House, very seriously.

Sir, what are the levels of misuse? Where does exactly misuse or abuse occur? First, at the State level and at the political or the administrative or the executive level. It is very, very interesting. After the release of funds from the Central Government, how does that process start and specially the utilisation process starts or the examination process starts at the State level is very important to note. First of all, there is a considerable delay between the release of funds and the utilisation or the release further down at the State level. Now, the release, sometimes, is very intentionally delayed because the State Government delays it just to overcome its ways-and-means position vis-a-vis the Central Government's. Therefore, it gets delayed to a point; though the money is available, the money is released to the State with a delay. (Contd. by kls/2s)

KLS/2S-5.10

DR. RADHAKANT NAYAK (CONTD): It is very interesting, and, therefore, at the various levels, with the knowledge of the political executive, the process itself is delayed. Sometimes one has to study as to what exactly is the time when the money is released and received by the State Government and what is the time taken by the State Governments for releasing it to the States. That needs a very, very microscopic scrutiny and then only will it be possible to find how and why process has been delayed and when the district level authorities received the fund for its utilisation. Now, Sir, I have seen some of these files for release of funds from the State level to the District level. It takes a long time and files are being kicked like football from one table to another, from the Finance Secretary to the Planning Secretary and from the Planning Secretary to the Administrative Department. Like that, the file goes on and on and nobody can be held squarely responsible for the delay. This delay itself is sometimes intentionally managed. Then there is second aspect, that is, after the release what exactly happens. Even before the Central Government releases the funds to the State Government, whether the figures are properly scrutinised and whether mechanically the expenditure figures are taken into account and thereafter the funds are released and whether the performance is qualitatively examined so that the sanctioning authority from the State Government or releasing authority from the Central Government is satisfied on the basis of the report of the utilisation by the State Government and then funds are released. Therefore, this aspect has to be very, very carefully examined. The same thing also should happen and some suggestions are also inbuilt into my analysis. The same kind of analysis should be made to see when the funds are released from the State Governments to the District level authorities. Until and unless the District level authorities give the correct picture of the performance of utilisation to the satisfaction of the authorities at the State level or the higher Executive level of the State Government, funds should not be released to the District level authorities at all. Otherwise, what happens is that funds are simply parked at the district level, they are not at all being utilised, and these funds do not go at the ground level and at the block level. Sir, the State Governments mostly when they release the funds are also doing in a very routine manner because the process itself takes such a long time and the routine itself takes such a long time that there is big time lag between the time targeted for the expenditure and the time target for its utilization. It is delaying further receipt of funds. Because of the delay by the State Governments, funds are not being released in time. (Time-bell) Sir, I have a lot of other points. Sir, there is one more point.

THE VICE-CHAIRMAN (PROF. P.J. KURIEN): Please conclude. Your time is over. ...(Interruptions)...

DR. RADHAKANT NAYAK: Sir, what the State Government has done in the meantime is that they have started some other subsidiary programme under this scheme. This is a flagship programme, as I have mentioned. But they have conceived another programme called Gopabandhu Anti-poverty Programme. The exact nomenclature I am not able to make out. But what happens is that this money is diverted to the other programmes and the State Government falsely takes the credit that this programme is initiated or being supported or funded by the State Government. To that extent, the role of the Central Government has been minimised or sometimes totally negatived. It is because of this diversion and re-appropriation also which is being done under the political pressure groups at the highest level of the State Government. And, to that extent, it is definitely a thing to be taken very, very seriously by the Central Government. (Contd by 2T/SSS)

SSS/2T/5.15

DR. RADHAKANT NAYAK (CONTD.): Sir, what happens at the district levels? Sir, at the district levels, we are supposed to have a proper, comprehensive, plan with regard to the self-help projects, with regard to the need on the basis of which the funds will have to be utilised or the programme has to be executed. There is a lot of problem in that because, in some districts, you will find that the planning has been done in a very lackadaisical manner and to that extent the money also goes into most of the programmes which are not at all need-based, most of the programmes which are not anti-poverty related, and by that, what happens is that, the entire programmes, up to the district level or even beyond, it fails. Now, Sir, the block level is very important, which is the cutting edge level, and, where the individual programmes will have to be implemented. There, at the implementation level, most of the individual projects are based on individual preferences of the party in power, which is also a very serious matter again, and, where the interference is maximum because where exactly the money will go, on which project the money will be spent, the decision is taken at the block level or at the Panchayat level. There again, it becomes extremely difficult for the project, to make it a success. Sir, the other aspect is beneficiary selection. In most cases, the beneficiaries are selected taking the political party affiliations into consideration. Now, I am talking in terms of Orissa. In many areas where the Opposition is there, the people who are supposed to be the beneficiaries, those who are really poor people, do not get any benefit at all. Otherwise, Sir, from Orissa, the labour will not go to Gujarat or Maharashtra or to Delhi, to be exploited. They would have stayed there. They would have stuck to the home ground. There, the migration of labour from Orissa about a decade ago was hardly two per cent. Now it has gone up to six to seven per cent, despite this programme, which is a very laudable programme, which is a very comprehensively and meticulously planned programme, now, this programme is failing on the ground. It is one of the indicators of failure of the programme in the State of Orissa.

THE VICE-CHAIRMAN (PROF. P. J. KURIEN): Kindly conclude.

DR. RADHAKANT NAYAK: Sir, I am concluding. What are the indicators of success that need to be seen? One is the time, the periodicity on which this programme is to be sanctioned and to be implemented. This programme will be implemented when harvest is on. But when people are really poor, when there is no harvest season, people have to work, it is rainy season, and at that time, work is not available. Naturally, when the figures come to the Central Government they are fudged. There is no doubt about it. Only in the season's of hunger, people are available for work, they need work. That is the time when people go away from the State of Orissa. There is difficulty because of that. So, one is the timing of the utilisation of money that goes from the Central Government. The second is the wage structure, the wage quantum. I think, all Members have said that proper wages are not paid and poor tribals, the dalits who are totally ignorant of the scheme are paid a pittance. Dr. Sengupta's report says Rs. 20 or less a day; even that wages they are not getting, that income is not available, because hardly Rs. 5 or Rs. 10 are being paid as wages. Therefore, wage structure is very important which is manipulatable and where the misuse of this fund goes into. The third aspect is the quality of work. Unless the quality of work, its durability, sustainability is accounted for, the quality of work will also suffer. Therefore, the misuse of power is visible only when the quality of work is below standards and that needs to be also taken into account. (Contd. by NBR/2U)

-SSS/NBR/VNK/2U/5.20.

DR. RADHAKANT NAYAK (CONTD.): The final thing, which is also very important, is about the publicity of this programme. If you go to a village in Koraput or if you go to hundred or five hundred villages, many people do not know what this is programme is all about. That means, the States Governments have totally failed in order to bring awareness about this programme. I remember, a few years ago, there was Employment Assurance Scheme. People knew about it. It was an assured employment. Now, this also gives an assured employment in a modified and in an improved manner. But, people are not aware about it. Therefore, the awareness level also goes down and, to that extent, cheating is very, very discernible and it is also ascertainable. Now, what can we do on this? It is not enough to say that the programme is bad or funds are being misused. It is not that way...(Time-bell)...We have to say what is the monitoring mechanism that is available at the State level. Sir, monitoring has to be done from the above i.e., from the Central Government. We have the Area Officers Scheme available. Under this, the Central Government send the group of officers under the Minister himself so that they will go down, they will verify on the spot, they will go down to the district level. That is being done. I am grateful to the Minister for that. But, the monitoring from below is also equally important which is called community monitoring or the social monitoring. Now, on this, there may be systematically or scientifically conceived format. But, even in that format, there are loopholes. Therefore, we need to have evaluation. Now, on this evaluation, I am yet to find out a very, very comprehensive evaluation report available to the House by the Ministry or by the State Governments. Now, the evaluation is done annually. That is not enough. There should be a concurrent evaluation programme. And, that evaluation should have certain specific indicators...(Time-bell)...Sir, some of the programmes cannot be evaluated. There are non-evaluable programmes also. Therefore, new indicators have to be evolved as to how the programme can be evaluated to the satisfaction of the Central Minister and the Central Ministry so that the programme can be successful.


THE VICE-CHAIRMAN (PROF. P.J. KURIEN): No, no. No new point.

DR. RADHAKANT NAYAK: It is not a new point.

I am on the evaluation point. Now, normally, we get satisfaction from the financial evaluation. We should take it on its face value. We have to have physical evaluation in terms of not only the number of projects but also the quality of projects, the type of projects, whether they are implemented by the people or by the contractor per se beyond the specifics that have been prescribed. All these will have to be taken into account. Therefore, I would be very happy to see some of these comprehensively evaluated, scientifically evaluated programmes by the Central Government or the State Government which is not at all available now. In this case, I think, Dr. Gill, himself has mentioned that what action has been taken either by the Central Government or by the State Government wherever the programme has failed or wherever misuse has been found, it is very easy to find automatically. What is the response of the structure in the system that has been evolved by the Central Government or by the State Government? In order to ensure that wherever there is a failure, the responsibility has been fixed on the State Government or on a particular person may be due to delay, intentional or unintentional, either for execution or for wrong selection of beneficiaries or non-payment of wages, what action has been taken we need to find out...(Time-bell)...

THE VICE-CHAIRMAN: Please conclude.

DR. RADHAKANT NAYAK: Sir, there are a large number of issues which I thought I wish to raise. But, anyway, since you are insisting, I stop at this. I thank you again for giving me time and the hon. Minister and the Ministry who are taking a lot of interest (Ends)

(FOLLOWED BY USY "2W")

-nbr-usy/2w/5.25

SHRI TIRUCHI SIVA (TAMIL NADU): Thank you, Mr. Vice-Chairman, Sir, for having given me this opportunity to speak. At the outset, I would like to congratulate the hon. Minister for this scheme, which is not only appreciated much, but also utilized much. May I, at this moment, recall the discussion that we had, a few days ago, in this House on the blasts in U.P, a discussion, which had taken place about two months ago, about the blasts in Hyderabad? We discussed at length, condemning the heinous acts, regretting for the victims, and also trying to find a device to curb all such activities. All the Members expressed their concern, and suggested, as the hon. Minister also told, that modernisation of weapons, strengthening of police force, and utilizing the assistance of the RAW and the IB will help that. I think, these are only secondary activities. We have to go into the activities of those people who are involved in that. 'Noy naadi noy mudal naadi' is a quotation in Tamil, which means, if there is a disease, don't look at the disease, go to the root of it. Some voluntary organizations, which have conducted some studies about this, have come out with an inference. The people, the youth, who are joining these anti-social elements, whether it is a terrorist force or hooligans, whether they are attracted by them or they are driven to that place, the inference is mere unemployment drives the youth, in this country, towards them, and their future is at stake. Having this mind, I hope, this Government, among many other activities, has introduced the NREG, providing employment to the youth, and, thereby, reducing the anti-social activities that are taking place in this country. I cannot be elaborate, discussing at length about what is happening across the country. But, as far as my State, Tamil Nadu, is concerned, when we assumed power, there was a ban on recruitment. But when we came to power, we lifted this ban. And, before giving job opportunities to the youngsters, we are giving monthly allowances to the youth. For 10th standard students, it is Rs. 150/-; for plus two students, it is Rs. 200/-, for graduates, it is Rs. 300/-. (Interruptions) I thank my friend for reminding me. As I told earlier, there was a ban on recruitment. The NREG was enacted in September, 2005. Initially, it was inaugurated in six phase-I districts -- Cuddalore, Villupuram, Nagapatttinam, Tiruvannamalai, Sivaganga and Dindigul. After this inauguration, it had to be formally launched in February, 2006. Even after three months, I should say, only rupees three crores had been spent out of the allotted fund of Rs. 198 crores. Only the job cards were printed. But the Scheme had not taken off. We assumed power in May 2006. As soon as we assumed power, we undertook various preliminary activities. We knew very well that this Scheme could not be implemented overnight. Some preliminary, preparatory activities were required, like, preparing project works, detailed estimation, and giving training to panchayat Presidents and officers, creating awareness among the people to get job cards, recruitment of technical staff for online monitoring of the work, etc. etc. So, as soon as we assumed power, we undertook all these preparatory activities and also the rural schedule of rates between May 2006 and August 2006. Many of the Members are of the opinion that responsibility of implementation of this scheme is totally vested in the State Government. We assumed power in May, 2006, under the leadership of Dr. Kalaignar. I am proud to say that the expenditure under the NREG rose from just rupees three crores in May, 2006, to rupees fifty crores in November, 2006... (Contd. by 2x -- VP)

VP/5.30/2x

SHRI TIRUCHI SIVA (CONTD.): ..Rs. 110 crores at the end of January 2007, Rs. 272 crores in May 2007, and Rs. 535 crores as on date. This is the development which has taken place within one year. I am very proud to say in this House that we are implementing this Scheme to the maximum level. The Government of India has also acknowledged Tamil Nadu as one of the top performing States in India of the NREG Scheme. I would also like to mention here that as recently as on 26th November 2007, Dr. Subhash Pani, Secretary, Government of India visited Cuddalore, which is one of the districts identified for implementing this Scheme, was full of appreciation for the implementation of NREGS. Tamil Nadu is the one State where the contractors and labour displacing machinery has been completely kept away. Sixty-three percent of the households in phase - I districts are registered, and they have got job cards. Statistical figures show that 82 per cent of them are women and 59 per cent are Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes.

Sir, moreover, realising the constraint of time, I would like to say that since Tamil Nadu is one of the best performing States under NREGS, the Director of Rural Development and Panchayat Raj has been nominated as one of the core committee members at national level to give further suggestions on how to implement this NREGS.

The Collectors and Project Officers of the DRDA were also invited to the Lal Bahadur Sastri National Academy of Administration, Mussorie, on 3rd and 4th December of this year to give a presentation on the implementation of NREGS in Tamil Nadu to the officials of other States.

Sir, phase-II comprises four districts; Thanjavur, Thirruvarur, Karur and Tirunalveli. In those districts, the administrative sanction by the collectors has already been completely done. Extensive training, that is, three rounds of training of all the village panchayat presidents, members, panchayat assistants, Makkal Nala Paniyaargal, DRDA, block staff and engineering staff, has already been done. In regard to recruitment, training, positioning of technical assistance, 105 computer assistance, the work is 95 per cent completed. Of the total 1602 villages, Sir, a total of 5.25 lakh households, representing 44 per cent of the total number of households in the four districts have so far been registered under the Scheme. The BPL percentage of these households is about 30 per cent. Printing of job cards has been done. Opening of NREGS bank accounts in each village panchayat has been done.

Sir, I hope Members from all other States would appreciate that the Tamil Nadu Government is implementing this Scheme to the maximum utility of the people. If at all anything has not been done earlier, as charged by some of my colleagues yesterday, Sir, it is only because of the reluctance, negligence and slackness on the part of the previous Government in power in Tamil Nadu. ..(Interruptions).. Now, Sir, we are doing it to the maximum extent, and I expect that, at least, hereafter, they will call a spade a spade. ..(Interruptions).. (Ends)

SHRI C. PERUMAL: Sir, I want to mention one point only. ..(Interruptions).. The hon. Member mentioned about Thanjavur and Trichy districts and about the irrigation canal also. ..(Interruptions).. If they did all those things earlier, then, ..(Interruptions).. why are they doing the same work again and again? The same works are being taken up again and again. ..(Interruptions)..

THE VICE-CHAIRMAN (PROF. P.J. KURIEN): Okay. ..(Interruptions).. Please sit down. ..(Interruptions)..

SHRI TIRUCHI SIVA: Sir, I should also be given time. ..(Interruptions).. Some Members here suggested that implementation of the Scheme rests with State Governments. ..(Interruptions).. I said that out of Rs. 198 crores only Rs. 3 crores had been spent. ..(Interruptions).. And, it is only because of the reluctance of the State Government. ..(Interruptions)..

THE VICE-CHAIRMAN: Now, please sit down. ..(Interruptions).. Now, Shri Ekanath K. Thakur.

SHRI EKANATH K. THAKUR (MAHARASHTRA): Thank you, Sir, for this opportunity to speak on the National Rural Employment Guarantee Scheme. It is, at once, a pleasure and a sorrow to speak on this. It is a pleasure because though I belong to the Opposition, I must, frankly, admit that this Scheme is given by the hon. Minister Dr. Raghuvansh Prasad Singh with all the sincerity, all the commitment and all the tenacity at his command. (Continued by 2Y/PK)

PK/5.35/2Y

SHRI EKANATH K. THAKUR (CONTD.): Those of us who are in the know of things about how things happen in India and how all good intentions are buried, also know that this Scheme could have been buried before it would be born, but for Dr. Singh. Dr. Singh happened to the Finance Ministry, but the Finance Ministry did not happen to him. So, he deserves all the accolades, all the kudos and all the appreciation of this House. Secondly, why I am pleased to speak on this Scheme is for the simple reason that it is not one-of-a- kind Scheme. This is a flagship Scheme. If this Scheme, eventually, succeeds, it will change the face of rural India. Sir, according to newspaper reports, the richest man in the world lives in India. They say Mukesh Ambani, and they are going ga-ga over it. I am surprised, but that is a claim, and that is one thing. I don't want to quote Karl Marx from Das Capital, or, elsewhere and say all property is theft, but, here, thugs are celebrated. I am not making an allegation against any one. We say that we are going to be an economic super power. We say, we are going at one of the fastest rates of nine per cent. We say India can claim many millionaires. We say there is prosperity, happiness all around and people are dancing and singing in the name of economic growth. But what is the reality? The reality is not pointed out recently, but it has been pointed out over the last sixty years. But it has been very poignantly and painfully pointed out by no person other than Shri Arjun Sengupta, who is an esteemed Member of this House, and I bow, with all honour, before him for having brought out the reality. What is the reality? Shri Arjun Kumar Sengupta's report on the unorganised sector is there, which I happened to read only today, because, this House only will make available a Xerox copy of it. What is the statement in it? The statement is, 77 per cent of Indians live below Rs.20/- a day, and 77 per cent means 82 crore people. That means, more than 60 per cent of the world's poor live in this country. If you take the definition of poverty given by the Indian Government, you will find that 260 million, that is, 26 crore are not only bordering on abject poverty, but they are living a life of degeneration, dehumanisation, dearth and squalor. Sir, this is the condition in which this Scheme has come. This is the backdrop of this Scheme. Therefore, though we are the Opposition, I must go and say that this is one Scheme which has a forward-looking vision. In any new scheme, there are going to be problems and inadequacies, because our society comprises good, bad and indifferent people. There are those who use a scheme and there are those who misuse a scheme. This Scheme has been misused in its early stages. Sir, the State from which I hail, Maharashtra, is a precursor in Employment Guarantee Scheme and we started much early, in late 70's. We were the first to start this Scheme in Maharashtra and we too had fake musters, registers, attendance, all the inadequacies and all the charges with which this National Rural Employment Guarantee Scheme is today plagued. Our Scheme was also plagued with the same. But, over a period of time, certain improvements were brought about. I am sure under the stewardship of such a sincere Minister like Dr. Singh, further improvements will be brought about. Sir, I want to only bring to light why this Scheme has come about. Very few people understand it. There are two types of degradations which are taking place. (Contd. by 2Z/PB)

PB/2Z/5.40

SHRI EKANATH K. THAKUR (CONTD.): And, that is where I invite the attention of the hon. Minister. There is one degradation which is bringing our future progeny in great distress and it is the degradation of our land, of our biomass and of our water resources. This is one degradation.

The second degradation is of our human resources. Sir, if able-bodied people are not given work which is gainful, if the able-bodied people do not earn, if their problems of nutrition are not solved, then the nation eventually is not going to have the kind of future which we are looking forward to. And right from young children to young men, they starve, as they are starving today, in my State Maharashtra, which is the most progressive State; there is a report by a social organisation that out of more than hundred million people, ten million people sleep every day with one meal a day. That is the condition of the most progressive, most advanced, most developed State in India. If people do not get proper nutrition, then the nation eventually is not going to have the kind of future which we are looking forward to.

Sir, in our system, there have been leakages. These leakages were first officially admitted by Late Shri Rajiv Gandhi. Shri Rajiv Gandhi said that of every rupee that is spent, only seventeen paise reach the poor man, the person for whom it is targeted. And, that happened some twenty years ago. What is the situation today? Only last week, the Finance Minister, Mr. P. Chidambaram, admitted that twenty-eight per cent of the subsidies -- we today have a subsidy bill of one lakh crores, Rs. 100,000 crores, and food, fuel and fertiliser subsidy is twenty eight per cent -- are not reaching those whom it is supposed to reach. Only yesterday, there was a statement in the newspapers that a responsible member of the Indian Statistical Institute says that sixty per cent of the kerosene, which is provided at the Public Distribution System at nine rupees a litre goes to the black market and sold at Rupees thirty per litre and much of it is used for adulteration of diesel. Sir, everyone publicly knows about this. Who is accountable for this? When will the Government of India and when will the State Governments of India be made accountable by this highest House? Are we going to hear stories that there are leakages here, there are seepages here? Who is going to make them accountable? Shri Rajiv Gandhi said it, P. Chidambaram says it, and even the Statistical Organisation Authority says it. Everybody openly admits it. Why is it that we have not been able to create a monitoring organisation, a vigilance organisation that can save the lives of our people? More than one lakh fifty thousand farmers have committed suicide. Several thousand other people have died of starvation. I demanded it in this House a number of times, I asked of the former Food Minister of the NDA Government and the present Food Minister, whether 'no starvation death' was your policy. Mrs. Brinda Karat supported me, at that time, and your colleagues and others also supported me. 'No starvation death' is not even our policy today in official documents! Now, if we have to have this Scheme successful, we have to have very strong monitoring; we have to have very strong vigilance, and that is what is not happening.

Sir, in order to make this Scheme successful, it is not enough that money reaches those for whom it is intended. But it should also subserve the purpose for which initially this Scheme was conceived. Sir, the greatest thing, as I mentioned to you, is that there is the degradation of land, degradation of biomass and the degradation of our water resources. India has sixteen per cent of world's population, but only four per cent of world's fresh water, and the paucity of fresh water is going to be a great problem for this nation. (Contd. by 3a/SKC)

3a/5.45/skc

SHRI EKANATH K. THAKUR (CONTD.): The groundwater table is going down. There is a special report which has been published only last week by the Planning Commission on groundwater table. Groundwater provides for 56 per cent of India's irrigation. And, that is nowhere there. Therefore, if you want to create usable assets and durable assets by using labour force, you have to see to it that all this labour force is utilised according to a plan for conservation of water, watershed development programmes and for raising the level of groundwater. I think, such plans and schemes are not in place. I would like to request the hon. Minister, through you, that since this is your first or second year, and you are going to...(Time-bell)...

Sir, how many minutes did you give to a member of the ruling party? I have a watch here and there are several clocks here; everybody witnesses it.

THE VICE-CHAIRMAN (PROF. P.J. KURIEN): You have already taken ten minutes.

SHRI EKANATH K. THAKUR: I have taken ten minutes. But those ten minutes were granted to me because I was praising the Minister. If I had started opposing him, then I would have been given only two minutes! That is why..(Interruptions)...

THE VICE-CHAIRMAN: No, no. Please don't make such charges. That is not correct. Now, you may start criticising him; I have no problem! You may wind up now, please.

SHRI EKANATH K. THAKUR: Sir, Shrimati Nirmala Deshpande said that there should be some provision in this scheme for the farmer that if he wants to do some work in his fields, he should be allowed to do so. Nirmalaji, I have read the Act and there is a provision for this. A farmer can use this scheme for SCs/STs and use this money for that purpose. That provision is there. But, Sir, through you, to one of the most progressive Ministers of modern India, I would like to make a request. Today, farmers are committing suicide. In Maharashtra, when people came to know that there is a Rural Employment Scheme, thousands of them applied for employment. There were about 20 million people who applied for jobs but jobs were actually given only to two lakh people. That means, looking at the nature of manual work and hard work involved, nobody is coming forward. Therefore, Sir, people will come forward if you ask them to work on their own farms. Today, farming has become uneconomic. Inputs are very costly. Farmers are dying; they are committing suicides. My request to you is this. Sixty-one per cent of the area in India is rainfed; there is no irrigation. Therefore, at least, 100 days of work on one's own farm should be treated as rashtriya shram, national labour, under this National Rural Employment Guarantee Programme to every farmer. Then, you will find that there would be no made-up musters and attendance; there will be nothing cooked up. A farmer working on his own farm is important...

THE VICE-CHAIRMAN (PROF. P.J. KURIEN): Please conclude.

SHRI EKANATH K. THAKUR: Sir, I shall be concluding in a minute.

Whenever economy progresses, the contribution of agriculture to GDP comes down. In USA, it came down, first to 15 per cent, then 10 per cent and now to 5 per cent. But along with that, the population dependent on agriculture has also come down in those countries. But, Sir, in India, the contribution of agriculture to the Gross National Product is 14.7 per cent. It has come down from 23 per cent to 14.7 per cent.

THE VICE-CHAIRMAN (PROF. P.J. KURIEN):: Now, please conclude.

SHRI EKANATH K. THAKUR: But, Sir, the population dependent on agriculture even today is 65 per cent. This is peculiar to India. In other countries where progress has taken place, the GDP portion of contribution by agriculture has come down and the population dependent on agriculture has come down. In India, the contribution of agricultural products has come down but the population dependent on agriculture has not come down. Therefore, doctor saab, you will be remembered by history, you will be remembered by the future of humankind, if you give 100 days' employment to the farmer on his own land and treat his labour as national labour, as rashtriya shram. Save the farmer; save the nation. (Ends)

(Followed by 3b/hk)

HK-AKG/3B/5.50

THE VICE-CHAIRMAN: Shri Tiruchi Siva took ten minutes and you took fifteen minutes. But you were casting aspersions on the Chair.

SHRI EKANATH K. THAKUR: Sir, I withdraw it. I compliment the Chair, so that you will always be kind to me.

֮֕ן ֤ (ײָ) : ֳ֬ , ָ ָ Ӿ֤ օ ֮֮ߵ ӡ ֮־֤ ߴ ֵ߅ š״ ִ֕־֤ , ׻֋ ֮־֤ ֺ ֮֓֯ ֟ ָ ִ , ָ , ָ ֢ ָ discussion օ ָ ֻ ֢ ִ ֻ, ׻ ָ ִ ״ֻ֮ ֻ ֢ ָָ ָ ٣ ֛ ו֮ ֢ פ ֋, ׮ ֋ ׻֋ ֮ ײ employment scheme under the National Rural Employment Guarantee Progamme has been implemented by the hon. Minister and, Sir, I am really thankful to him.

ָ, ָ ןֹ ׿־ ָ ״ֻ֛֮ 63 ָ implementation - ֵֿ ״ֻ֛֮ ׻֋ ״ֻ֛֮ ָָ ֮ ׻י ֵ֤ ׻֋ ߴ , ׾ָ֓ օ ָ߲ ֤ , ׾ָ֓ , פ ׻֋ 63 ָ implementation օ ו ָָ פ ׻י ֵ֤ , ױ ߴ ߅ ָָ ִ ׌֟ , ̸ - ָ Ϭ֮ ӡ ֛ ֮ , ָ , ָָ , ָָ, ָָ ԓ׸ ִ ָ , ֵ, ߴ ֵ ָָ ָ , ݵ ָ ֤֕ ִ ׻ֵ , ׻ ֿ߮ ִ ָ ֿ߮ ִ 100 ֵ ֟ , 50 ֵ 25 ֵ פ ֟ ӡ , ֯ ֟ ָָ ׾ֿ ִ , ֲ ֕ ֳ ָ , Ѿ ֻ ֟ , ߛ߆ ֟և ָ ָ ֮ ֮֯ ֮ ִ פ, ׮ִԻ ֮֮ߵ ֤õ ֟֋ ֮ פ ָ ... (ִֵ ә) ... ָ, ״֮֙, ֯ ә ֮֕ ֺ ״֮֙ ֟ օ ֮֯ פ, ֯ ? ֕ פ, ֯ ? ָ , ־֮Դ , ? ֯ ׮֙ظ ׾ֳ ? ֯ ׮֙ظ և ߛ߆ ֛ ֮ , ִ , ֿ߮ ִ ... (3 ָ ֿ:)

KSK/SCH/5.55/3C

֮֕ן ֤ (֟): 100 ֵ 50 ֵ ָ פ ? ֯ ? ? ֯ ә և֮ ֮ ִ ?

֮ ִ , ֛ ִ , ָ פ ֕ ֮ ׻י ֵ֤ ׻֋ ߴ ...(־֮֬) ָ, ֬ ״֮֙ օ

ָ, ֯ ִ֬ ֮֮ߵ ӡ ָ ׮֙ظ ִ ָ ֯ ִ ֮ ל ߴ , ֋߅ ֲ ֣ ֮ ֟ ִ֯ ֮֯ ֮ ׻֋ ִֵ פ, ׻֋ - ֮־֤ (ִ֯)

ㇵ (֬ Ϥ): ֮֮ߵ ֳ֬ , ֮֯ ֮ ׻֋ ״֮֙ ִֵ פ, ׻֋ ֯ - ֮־֤ ֮֮ߵ ӡ ֟ ֮ ֟ ־ ׸ ָ ֕ '™ߵ ָ ָ ֮' ֮ ׻֋ ֵ ֕ ־ԯϣִ ֬ Ϥ ִ ֟ ֕ã֮ ִ ֵ ֮֮ߵ ӡ ־ ו֮ ֕ '™ߵ ָ ָ ֮' ֮ ׻֋ ֵ , ֕ ׻֋ Ϥ ֮֮ߵ ܵ סֵ ִ֮ ֮ ָ ֕ ֯ ֮ ֮ ׻֋ ָ ״ֻ

֟ ֮֮ߵ ֟ ֮֕ן ׻֋ ֯ ֮ ֟ ß־ ־ ֟ ֬ Ϥ פ וֻ , ָ ָ ׻֋ ָ ܵ פ ָ ֕ ֵֻ֮ ֟ ֮֯ 100 פ ָ ֟ , ֮֕ן ׻֋ 100 פ ָ ֵԯ פ ׻֋ 100 פ ֤ 200 פ ָ פ ֋, , ָ ֮֕ן ׌ ָ ָ ֌ ָ Ϥ ָ וֻ ֟ , ã֮ߵ ßָ ָ ָ ֲֻ ֯ ׮־ ֮ ֮־֤, ֵ (ִ֯)

THE MINISTER OF PANCHAYATI RAJ (SHRI MANI SHANKAR AIYAR): Sir, because so many speakers have referred to former Prime Minister, Shri Rajiv Gandhi's, remark about 85 paise in a rupee, being absorbed on the way and not reaching, I seek your indulgence to offer the following clarification, which, I think, is important to place on the record despite the fact that I have, on more than one occasion, in the past, in both Houses, mentioned this.

It is the result of a study undertaken for the Planning Commission in 1989 about some implementation of some rural development schemes in one of the States of India. The expert concerned had pointed out that 85 paise were spent by the Administration on itself in administering the scheme; not that the 85 paise went into corruption. Therefore, he argued that if we could reduce administrative expenses by giving these responsibilities more directly to the elected institutions, such as the Panchayats, then, the amount of money available to reach the people directly would proportionately increase. Therefore, the argument about 85 paise is not related to corruption in the system, but to the system of Administration itself. If we could depend less on the bureaucracy and more on the elected representatives at the grassroots level, then, according to the then Prime Minister, Shri Rajiv Gandhi, instead of only 15 paise reaching the beneficiaries, a larger proportion in every rupee would reach the beneficiaries. (Ends)

(followed by 3d - sk)

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