NREGA: A River of Corruption

By Gladson Dungdung

18 September, 2009

The Congress-led UPA government propagated the National Rural Employment Guarantee Act 2005 known as NREGA, as one of its biggest achievements, during the last general election.

NREGA Martyr Tapas Soren

NREGA Martyr Tapas Soren

The government of India had brought NREGA with the objectives of enhancing livelihood security in rural areas by providing at least 100 days of guaranteed wage employment in a financial year to every household and also increases the sustainable agriculture economy. But it failed to meet the objectives in Jharkhand. If anyone willing to know about the ground realities of NREGA, must visit to Latehar district of Jharkhand. or even roam across Palamu, Hazaribagh and Deoghar districts, the fact is, one can find more or less the same stories across the state that how the poor are being betrayed by the government officials, the contractors and the middlemen in NREGA. Continue reading

The New Zamindari

A protest against Corruption in NREGA

A protest against Corruption in NREGA

By Gladson Dungdung

Tehelka 7 November, 2008

Bureaucrats, politicians and contractors in Jharkhand benefit from NREGS, not the poor

The National Rural Employment Guarantee Act (NREGA) introduced to ensure 100 days work for the poor, has occupied the centre stage of rampant corruption in Jharkhand. The self immolation of Tapas Soren, brutal killing of Lalit Mehta and martyrdom of Turiya Munda against corruption in NREGA have had no impact in the mindset of the government officials, contractors and middlemen for whom the NREGA has become a milch cow. Now, bribes go to the tiers in the government in fixed percentages. One pays 4 percent to Panchayat Sevak, 5 percent to Block Development Officer, 5 percent to Engineer and list goes on. Half of the money goes in bribes. This is known to all the senior officers but hardly any one is punished for their illegal acts. Continue reading

Welfare’s Victim?

By Gladson Dungdung 

Tehelka 2 August, 2008
An NREGS contractor’s self-immolation reveals rampant corruption in the Scheme. 
Tapas in Hospital

Tapas in Hospital

ACOMMUNITY THAT has always been on the receiving end of dubious ‘development’ efforts undertaken in their name, the Adivasis of Jharkhand can now add the National Rural Employment Guarantee Scheme (NREGS) to the long list of their torments. The latest victim is 34-year-old Tapas Soren of Sarwaha village in Hazaribagh district, a small-time NREGS contractor whose death by self-immolation was reported across the country. On July 2 afternoon, Soren set himself afire at Hazaribagh’s busy Charhi Chowk. He was admitted to a Ranchi hospital and later on referred to Safdarjung hospital, New Delhi where he succumbed to his injuries on July 8. Continue reading