New Delhi: The Central Employment Guarantee Council (CEGC), which is the top monitoring body of the Ministry of Rural Development, has failed to hold meeting from past nine months. The council was dissolved nine months back and till date it is yet to be formed again.

As a result, there is no authorized body to look after the government’s highly-ambitious MNREGA programme. The council has a provision for meeting in every six months.

Neither the previous ministers of the Ministry of Rural Development took any keen interest on the issue, nor has the recently appointed Minister Vilasrao Deshmukh reflected any concern in this regard.

CEGC has played a vital role in recognizing the drawbacks of the MNREGA and in grooming the rural employment scheme. The council comprises founder members and prominent personalities from different fields.

The tenure of the council expires every year, and the maximum period a member has to serve the post is for two years. As per this provision, the possibilities of founder members Aruna Roy and Jyanendra being nominated as members again has become minimal.

According to sources, Ministry of Rural Development Secretary BK Sinha has sent a proposal to Vilasrao Deshmukh where he has offered Roy and Jyanendra to join the council as permanent invitee. However, this proposal was also put in the list of pending issues.

For the effective functioning of the MNREGA, the CEGC had even formed six task force committees for wages, transparency and accountability, planning, work numbers, capital and social protection and management as the key aspects.

Prominent members like Madhusudhan Misti, Ashwani, Sanjay Dixit, R Dhruva Narayana, K S Gopal found many drawbacks in the plans of the different states and submitted their report.

A former member is of the view that due to the dissolution of the council, the activities under MNREGA have been affected.

JPN/Bureau