HC livid over non clearance of MGNREGA bills, pulls AP govt up

Hyderabad: The high court expressed its indignation over the non release of MGNREGA bills by the Andhra Pradesh Government. The high court while hearing a petition inquired as to why the AP government failed to comply with the court’s order regarding MGNREGA bills’ clearance, “Does it (AP Govt.) has no respect for the court,” the HC asked.

The AP government pleader informed the court that Rs. 413 crores had been paid and Rs. 1117 crore will be released within the next 4 months. The petitioner’s attorney, however, informed the court that the government has released only Rs. 40 crore. The court directed the government to submit details of the fund released to every Gram Panchayat.

The court asked the Principal Secretary of the Panchayat Raj Department for the Vigilance Report pertaining to the MGNREGA bills payment. The high court was livid to know that the officials had no information about the report. The HC pulled up the officials asking them how they came to the court without details.

The court also took objection for the absence of the Principal Secretary (Finance) in the court and observed that the Principal Secretary in his petition failed to state the reasons for seeking his exemption from attending the court.

The high court directed the Principal Secretary (Finance) to remain present in the court during the next hearing and his failure to do so will be deemed as contempt of court and action shall be taken against him.

The next hearing of the case has been fixed for August 18.

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