Rs 322 crore for village development: Aiyer

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Ranchi, Feb 16 (UNI) Steps are afoot to allocate a sum of Rs 322 crore to Jharkhand for developmental works in villages by the end of this fiscal, Panchayati Raj Minister Mani Shankar Aiyer announced here today.

Mr Aiyer said the proposed allocation by his ministry, which is now awaiting cabinet's approval, holds a lot of significance, though the state had not yet gone for Panchayati Raj (PR) polls.

Inaugurating a three-day interactive session, organised by Rural Litigation and Entitlement Kendra, an NGO, between women members of self help group, specially those belonging to SC/ST and higher judiciary, Mr Aiyer said the money would be sent by the Centre under specific district plans.

He appreciated the Madhu Koda-led UPA government in the state for its ongoing plan to give Rs 55,000 each to 27,000 'gram sabhas'.

However, the state had not yet gone for the PR election as the matter was pending in court.

Mr Aiyer said he had already discussed the issue with Prime Minister Manmohan Singh who had agreed in principle for the allocation and the ministry had sent a cabinet note for yesterday.

He, however, cleared the allocation meant only for this year but further allocation by his ministry could be done only after the election by the PR bodies.

He urged the Supreme Court to give its verdict regarding PR polls in Jharkhand so that the Chief Minister could keep his promise of holding the much-delayed election.

UNI PRS KK GL RN1818

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