New Delhi, May 28 : Home Minister Shivraj Patil today presided over a meeting of senior officials of different central ministries to review development work in naxal-affected districts.
According to sources, the meeting lasting over two hours, was attended by senior officers of the rural development, power, telecommunications, health and family welfare, agriculture, tribal affairs, panchayati raj ministries.
Minister of State for Home Sri Sriprakash Jaiswal and senior home ministry officials were also present.
The Home Minister took stock of the development schemes and some of his observations were as under:
1): On the scheme NREGS- Patil requested the Ministry of Rural Development to ensure that the average number of days of employment in the Naxal-affected 33 districts is enhanced. Currently, the average for these districts is less than half the limit of 100 days prescribed under the NREGA.
2) On the Indira Awas Yojna (IAY) and the Home Ministry held the view that providing housing is the most crucial aspect of development and the State Govt's should be asked to ensure that there is a prioritization in favour of the Naxal affected 33 districts when implementing IAY on the ground.
3) Pradhan Mantri Gram Sadak Yojna (PMGSY): Patil urged focused implementation of the scheme for the Naxal affected districts and opined that roads and connectivity were a must. He also requested the officials of the Ministry of Rural Development to strengthen the monitoring mechanism for ensuring faster implementation of the scheme in Naxal-affected districts. In particular he requested for taking up road construction in the tribal and forest districts of Chattisgarh and Kharkhand on a priority basis.
4) Patil advised the Tribal Affairs Ministry representative to communicate to the Rajya Sabha and Lok Sabha MPs from these affected districts to make some contribution under the MPLADS Scheme for the construction of Hostels for students studying in residential/ ashram schools.
5) On the Power situation, HM reviewed the work done under the Rajiv Gandhi Gramin Vidyut Yojna but at the same time emphasized the need to tap the Non Conventional Energy Sources (NCES) as small hamlets of habitation separated by 100s of Kms can only be served through NCES.
6) On the telecommunication front, Patil was apprised of the shortfall in putting up the mobile communication Towers on account of finding secure places. The Home Minister offered that the towers could be located in the premises of the Central Paramilitary Forces Stationed in these districts as well as in the Police Station premises.