Agartala, Jul 8 UNI | 24 days ago

Tripura Chief Minister Manik Sarkar today threatened to launch a nationwide campaign against Narendra Modi-led NDA government at the Centre if it discontinued Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment Guarantee Scheme (MGNREGS).

Addressing a Panchayat election rally at Mohanpur, Northern part of Agartala, Mr Sarkar alleged that Narendra Modi-led government was planning to wind up MGNREGS and discontinue the guarantee of rural employment implemented by UPA-I.

"The state has been recognised topper in implementation of the scheme for past four years but if it is discontinued, rural India will suffer," Mr Sarkar observed.

He, however, pointed out that the new government was reportedly proceeding to withdraw the scheme, as BJP and its allies found it worthless and unproductive, which is totally wrong and baseless. Left parties would go for a mass movement to retain employment right of the rural poor of the country.

Besides, providing minimum wage earnings under MGNREGS to rural poor, a large number of assets and infrastructures had been created across rural India, he said.

Criticising the new government at the Centre, Mr Sarkar said for past one year, Mr Modi has been promising for a better governance and people friendly decisions to revamp economic growth but now it appears reverse and worst.

"Price rise of essential commodities and price hike of petroleum products have become a routine phenomena for India now and larger section of Indians have been suffering from patronization of rich class by the government and there is no major hope of change," Mr Sarkar rued.

He also stated that anti-people policies and decisions of UPA-I & II had given an opportunity to Mr Modi to come in power.

The left parties would not sit idle but resort to nationwide agitation against anti-poor move and decisions of the Centre, Mr Sarkar said, adding that the party would not tolerate any reform at the cost of commoners' interest. Meanwhile, soon after the statement of Mr Sarkar, BJP state unit made a sharp reaction and criticised the Left front government of the state for large scale corruption in implementation of MGNREGS funds and other centrally sponsored schemes.

BJP State president Sudhindra Dasgupta alleged thousands of crore of rupees had been diverted to CPI-M party fund at the behest of Mr Sarkar and his party cadres. As a result, in paper Tripura becomes topper in implementation of the schemes but in practice, the entire fund was drained out.

"MGNREGS funds have been used for construction of roads, houses and ponds of CPI-M leaders and cadres in a large extent in the villages and at the time of payment in most of the cases, workers were paid half of their dues, as another half was directly eaten by the party cadres," Mr Dasgupta alleged.

He further stated the party did not get any such communication that rural employment schemes are going to be withdrawn and even if it is discontinued, the Modi government will definitely bring something best for the country.

(Posted on 08-07-2014)