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Center’s special fund for developing backward areas under Maosists’ influence ; will it change fates of hinterlands?


February 1st, 2018

Our Bureau/

Center all set to open Pandora box for the residents in hinterlands which are under the grip of Maoists in 35 districts spread across 7 states in the country.

Hinterlands’ residents in Maoists ravaged  sleepy eastern Bihar districts of Banka and Jamui  will be beneficiaries as the center is scheduled to allot special funds mainly for bridge the gaps in developments in areas under rebels’ strongholds and otherwise sit in back benches.

The center is all set to release special funds to 35 districts across 7 states including 6 districts in Bihar which are under left wing extremism (LWE). The funds would be mainly for development of infrastructures and other services to the people so that the areas could be compared with others areas on developmental growths.

According to an established source, the funds would be allotted under special central assistance (SAC) for three consecutive years starting from the financial year 2017-2018. Union ministry of home affair (MHA) is scheduled to allocate Rs 28.57 crore annually to each 35 districts for public welfare works mainly.

Among the districts enlisted in Bihar for enjoying SAC project is Gaya, Muzaffarpur, Nawada, Aurangabad besides Banka and Jamui. As per the sources, the proposals of the plans for executing in the areas have to be approved by MHA and a district would have to be utilized the funds within the financial year. “If any district would failed to utilize the funds for the specific financial year, it would consider as lapses with no adjustment,” the sources further added.

For utilizing the funds and subsequently executing it in the actions, a there would be a district level committee (DLC) headed by district magistrate, superintendent of police and district forest officials. Before getting MHA’s final approval, the blue prints prepared by the DLC of a district would be checked by state level committee  (SLC) of that respective state under which jurisdiction the district is falling. The SLC would be headed by chief secretary of the state.

The sources further disclosed that formalities for formation of SLC committee in 7 states which are the beneficiaries of the schemes, have been initiated and

by the middle of February 2018, the MHA would intimated the states. A special secretary rank official at MHA who also assigned for keeping watch on Maoists activities throughout the country, is cording with states for the formation of SLC vis-a-visa the implementation of SCA, the sources said.

However, district level officials at Jamui and Banka yet not have any idea about SCA but appreciated such innovates taken out by the central government. “ Though we yet not received any information related to the issue  but it will certainly change the fate of hinterlands in poor sleepy districts like Banka. There are certain issues which need to be address in the remote areas and for that the center’s funds are very essential,” said Kundan Kumar, district magistrate, Banka.

However many persons concerned raised question about proper utility of such funds . “Earlier the central government introduced many welfare schemes for such areas which are badly effected with LWE, but nothing could be achieved so far. Now launching of the proposed SCA would depend on the official concerned  who would be actual architectures of the scheme; success or failure would depend on their abilities,” said Arun Bohora, a Jhajha based social activist.

Citing an example, he recalled how Jamui district administration earlier spent such special area development fund in purchasing fogging machines to counter mosquito menaces in Jamui township. “Even after the long years of Indian Independence villagers  over more than hundreds remote villages from eastern Bihar districts like Jamui, Banka, Munger and Lakhisarai still have to migrate temporarily to search drinking water as with the onset on summer, drinking water sources dried up at their villages. The villagers who still have to depend on stream, village well or other natural water sources, yet not have any other options for drinking water at their villagers, pointed out Kishore Jaiswala, a water activist at Munger.

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