JAMMU: Enumerating several steps taken for ensuring proper implementation and adequate utilization of funds under various rural development schemes, Minister for Rural Development and Panchayati Raj, Mr. Ali Mohammad Sagar said that it is the endeavour of the Government to work for ensuring proper and sustained development of the rural and far-flung areas besides keeping ecological concerns, like sanitation, soil erosion, water scarcity in consideration.
Replying to the discussion on demand of grants for the Departments under charge, the Minister said besides empowering panchayats with powers of 14 vital departments. The Government has decided to give honorarium to Sarpanches and Panches to strengthen Panchayati Raj in the State. He said that in order to broaden the ambit of the Panchayati Raj Act, the amendments proposed by different quarters have been considered and the provision of giving representation to the under privileged classes and women has also been explored.
The Minister said Panchayat Adalats have been notified by the concerned designated authority and IMPA has been asked to prepare a training module for their capacity building so that various disputes at village level can be settled within the community. He said that directorates of social audits have been created and during current financial year, 1582 audits in 1271 panchayats have been conducted.
Under 13th Finance Commission, the Minister said, the construction of 1788 Panchayat Ghars has been taken in hand for augmentation of rural infrastructure. He said that a grant in aid amount of Rs. 72.24 crore has been released to panchayats for asset creation, furniture fixture and rent. He said steps are being taken to provide group life insurance cover to the panchayat representatives and during current financial year, new schemes of E-panchayats and RGPSA have been launched.
Sagar said that under BRGF and RGSY capacity building extensive trainings are provided to the Panchayat representatives as per national capacity building frame work and during the current financial year, an amount of Rs. 11.85 crore has been earmarked for the same. He said livelihood scheme of NRLM under the nomenclature of UMEED has been launched in four blocks on pilot basis.
Earlier, Mr. Sagar moved that a sum of Rs. 614.96 crore be granted to the Government to defray the charges which will come in the course of payment during the year ending March 31, 2014.
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