Centre warns Baghel govt: Implement rural housing plan or we reconsider aid

The Center has asked the Bhupesh Baghel-led Congress government in Chhattisgarh to “force” the Union Ministry of Rural Development (MoRD) if the state is “incompetent” to implement the Pradhan Mantri Awas Yojana-Gramin (PMAY-G). Will go To “reconsider” its support for other “main” rural schemes like Pradhan Mantri Gram Sadak Yojana (PMGSY).

It is learned that Rural Development Secretary Nagendra Nath Sinha has given this information in a letter to Chhattisgarh Chief Secretary Amitabh Jain on August 1.

The Centre’s warning comes after Chhattisgarh failed to release its share of the funds required to implement the scheme in the state.

Chief Secretary Jain did not respond to phone calls and text messages from The Indian Express for comment.

Sources said the Center had set a target of constructing 7.8 lakh houses under PMAY-G during the financial year 2021-22. But MoRD, sources said, was “forced to withdraw” the target due to the state’s “inability” to release its share, amounting to Rs 562 crore, and the “unsatisfactory” progress of the scheme.

In 2020-21, the Center had allocated a construction target of 6.4 lakh houses under PMAY-G, of which the state “surrendered” 4.9 lakh houses, citing “financial constraints and difficulty” in releasing the respective state’s share. ” Had done it. The state had targeted only 1.5 lakh houses for 2020-21.

Under PMAY-G, the Centre and states share the expenditure in the ratio of 60:10. In the case of Himalayan states, Union Territories and states in the North-East, the ratio is 90:10.

On several occasions, the ministry urged the Chhattisgarh government to release its pending state share for the implementation of PMAY-G, sources said, adding that letters were sent to the state government in June, September and November last year.

Sources said that despite meetings and communications, the Chhattisgarh government has neither shown “satisfactory progress” nor released the state’s share of Rs 562 crore.

As a result, the work on PMAY-G has come to a standstill in the state.

Chhattisgarh is the only state where the scheme has faced a problem in the last 3-4 years, sources said.

The Centre has urged the state to ensure adequate fund flow for PMAY-G so that all eligible beneficiaries in the state are covered under the scheme.

Sources said that if the state does not release its share under the PMAY-G, the Centre may stop its support under two core schemes like PMGSY and Shyama Prasad Mukherji Rurban Mission.

Incidentally, the PMAY-G issue was highlighted by TS Singh Deo last month when he resigned from the Baghel government as the Minister of Panchayats and Rural Development.

In his resignation letter, the non-sanction of funds under PMAY-G was one of the issues that were mentioned. Singh Deo said that housing has not been built for 8 lakh people in the state due to the non-approval of funds.

“Houses were to be built for the homeless people under the Pradhan Mantri Awas Yojana and I had discussed and requested you to allocate funds for it, but the funds were not provided for the scheme, due to which there are no houses for 8 lakh people. could be created. Singh Deo said in his letter to Baghel on July 16.

He said that the right to housing in rural areas is one of the 36 goals mentioned in the manifesto of the Congress party in the state.

“It is a matter of concern that under the present government not a single house could be built in the state and the progress of the scheme remained nil. I am sorry that the benefits of the scheme could not reach the homeless in the state,” Singh Deo said.

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