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Gujarat school children given jobs under MGNREGS, govt cracks down on local officials
Chhotaudepur (Gujarat), July 20 - In a shocking incident, four school-going children were issued job cards, and bank accounts were opened in their names, under the Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment Guarantee Act (MGNREGA) in Gujarat's Chhotaudepur district.
As the district administration learned about this, the District Development Officer has dismissed the Gram Rozgar Sevak (GRS), issued notice to village sarpanch, and village's executive wing head Talati, of Kukarda village.
District Development Officer Ganga Singh told to IANS that GRS Lalji Dungarbhil had issued four job cards in the names of school children, a departmental inquiry was conducted and now he has been dismissed from service.
"Notices were issued to the village Sarpanch and Talati and both asked to give explanation... if they fail to give satisfactory explanation, action will be taken against them."
Talking to IANS, Ambalal, the husband of Kukarda village's sarpanch Gaunaben Ambalal Dungarbhil, said: "My wife is illiterate, so she signed the employment list prepared by GRS Lalji without verification.... Lalji did not show the jobs cards with photos though she had so demanded, while signing documents... it is not her fault."
"I have learned from other villages about three job cards issued in the name of school going children, a boy studying in class 10 and two girl students studying in class 9, and their bank accounts were opened with Bank of Baroda's Tanakhla village branch. At the most they were paid for a 25 to 26 days job."
After withdrawing the money, Lalji had even bought school stationery for children from the payment, and there is a possibility that children's parents might be involved in it, he alleged.
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