The Mint Report for 28 June 2010

The Mint Report for 28 June 2010

The government’s biggest welfare programme, NREGA, could undergo a dramatic change. The ministry of rural development is developing a new plan to check attendance at work sites.

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Its proposal involves a biometric scan of workers along with a GPS component to check their location. Authorities are hoping the new system will deal with the problem of so-called ghost workers on NREGA projects. And while the proposal is awaiting government approval, the rural development ministry plans to implement it within a year of getting the go-ahead. NREGA, of course, provides 100 of employment a year to a member of a poor rural household.

Reliance Communications’ deal to sell its cell phone towers to GTL is likely to cut that company’s debt drastically. Goldman Sachs estimates a cash infusion of about Rs18,000 crore. And another quote from Citi Investment Research and Analysis places it at Rs16,000 crore. The new cash is expected to help the company pay off some of its debt which now totals about Rs33,000 crore.