Jharkhand govt takes steps to mitigate lockdown effect
Jharkhand chief secretary Sukhdev Singh has directed officials to ensure that work under various government schemes are not hampered due to lack of funds and that allotment should be made immediately for their timely completion.
Reminding that the whole of the past financial year (2020-21) was spent in managing the Covid-19 pandemic, which is still continuing, Singh advised all the additional chief secretaries, principal secretaries and secretaries to review the position of the state government schemes and take steps accordingly.
“The impact of lockdown on livelihood and employment can be mitigated to a great extent by enhancing government spending,” Singh said in a note to the officials on Friday.
He advised them to chalk out a plan on how to spend the plan budget allocation wisely during the current fiscal.
“Ensure timely payment of wages to MGNREGA (Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment Guarantee Act) workers,” he further said, adding that they should also ensure that sufficient work sites are available for persons seeking employment under the national rural job scheme.
Approval for sanction may be obtained from the competent authority in case of new schemes where detailed project reports (DPRs) were already approved, he said, adding that the preparation of DPR and identification of land may be initiated in other cases.
Money should be transferred without further delay to the beneficiaries of pension and scholarship schemes through direct bank transfer to their accounts, the chief secretary said.
“Timely availability of credit, seeds and fertilisers to the farmers must be ensured for the forthcoming kharif season,” Singh said.
Timely allocation and lifting of food grains for public distribution system may also be ensured so that “the poor rural people who are facing the onslaught of Covid-19 may not face starvation”, the chief secretary added.
Though schools and ICDS (Integrated Child Development Services) centres are closed, the state government had initiated certain processes for ensuring availability of mid-day meal to eligible beneficiaries which should be implemented, he further said.
Availability of drinking water should also be ensured in both the urban and rural areas, he added.
The chief secretary also asked his colleagues to send proposals to the Union government for releasing the first instalment of the centrally sponsored schemes that would be running in the state.