It is a common practice by states in India to launch various schemes and programmes for the benefit of its people from different walks of life, including children, widows and those below the poverty line. The question here is not what are the various schemes launched by the governments, but how effective have they been in their implementation? Haryana is one such state that has launched various programmes in the name of development of the state and its citizens; let us find out their net effect in reaching and benefitting the people they are targeted at.
One such programme for the benefit of poor people is Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment Guarantee Scheme (MGNREGA). It is currently marred by controversies ranging from misutilisation of funds to embezzlement and ineffective implementation. Under this initiative, the funds are released by the Centre to the state governments. It has come to the notice that the funds are not being spent for the welfare of the poor. It amounts to gross misappropriation of public funds as they are not reaching the actual beneficiaries they are meant for. A Supreme Court bench also expressed concern over the shoddy implementation of the plan. It also commented that such schemes are failing as funds ends up in wrong hands.
In one such case in Ambala, the funds under this plan were not only misutilised but also, instead of taking actions against the erring officials, the whistle blowers were prosecuted. To aggravate the gravity of the matter, it also came to light that most of the work under the programme existed only on paper, making the programme a mere eye-wash. An immediate probe should be ordered and the guilty officers should be dealt with stern actions, including filing of criminal cases against them.
Another such controversial scheme has been mid-day meal scheme, which promises mid-day meals to school children. However, this programme is embroiled in controversies and shoddy implementation. It's not just about the quality of food being served in schools in the state but also the deaths resulting from poisoning of such food. The other glaring fact is that such meals are not hygienically prepared and also lack the nutritional requirements warranted under the programme. A similar Dal Roti Scheme that was launched with the aim of providing food to the people living below poverty line was also reported to be a mere eye-wash.
All these and many more such schemes clearly show the presence of a lax government in the state. All the erring government officials involved in the whole chain of any controversial plan should be made responsible for their wrongdoings. And, now the time is ripe to make the present government responsible for the programmes that have become anti-people in their nature.