New Delhi: The Government is roping in top universities and premier institutes such as the IIMs and IITs for assessing the impact of its flagship National Rural Employment Guarantee scheme.
Rural Development Minister Raghuvansh Prasad Singh said the Centre has written to heads of IITs and IIMs and vice-chancellors of universities seeking their cooperation and involvement in the scheme.
“We have started receiving responses from some of these institutions that they are keen to partner us,” Singh told the Rajya Sabha during Question Hour.
He said the Government has asked officials of these institutes to visit villages to conduct technical and impact assessment studies, besides helping in implementing the programme.
To a separate question, he said 2.37 crore households have got jobs under the rural employment guarantee scheme so far this year as against 2.10 crore families last year.
The Minister admitted that some instances of irregularities in implementation of the ambitious scheme have come to the notice of the Government and his Ministry was looking into such complaints.
“I admit there are teething troubles. In fact, it was my Ministry which had asked the Comptroller and Auditor General (CAG) to look into implementation of the scheme,” he said.
He said the implementation of the scheme was being done by states and the Centre has only a monitoring role. “There could be irregularities and we are looking into it,” he added.
To another question, Singh said Andhra Pradesh government with the help of Tata Consultancy Services (TCS) has developed a software to monitor implementation of the rural employment guarantee scheme in the state.
However, he said, this software does not capture data on “critical statutory parameters” like date of registration, employment application date, daily attendance on muster rolls and household photograph on the Job Card.
He said the Andhra Pradesh Government has been advised to prepare a bridge software so that this data can be availed by the Union Ministry which is monitoring the implementation of the programme.
The Rural Development Ministry is tracking the programme through a software developed by the National Informatics Centre. All the states are using the NIC software barring Andhra Pradesh.