To check the exploitation of the labourers by middlemen and sarpanches, the district administration decided to make payments to the beneficiary under the Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment Guarantee Act (MGNREGA) directly to the bank accounts using the e-payment mode.
The beneficiary labourer needs to be registered with the rural development department, Patiala. Till now, the sapranches have been entrusted with the task of giving MGNREGA workers in cash.
This system left many loopholes and there were sporadic reports that it led to malpractice and corruption.
"Though there was no major complaint of exploitation or of under-payment, but as an administrator I have upgraded the system to make it more efficient, thus we shifted to online payment", said Anindita Mitra, additional deputy commissioner (development).
The district has nearly 41,000 job card holders under scheme and administration has opened bank account of every worker at a bank branch nearest to his residence, so that he can draw payment directly.
Talking to HT, she added that the muster roll of the labourers were uploaded every day on the website and the banks will release the payment directly to the account, every 15 days.
"The rural development department has implemented the scheme from this fiscal and so far Rs 3 crore has been released to labourers in their direct bank accounts."
When asked about the progress of the MNGREGA scheme, She said that the against the last years achievement of Rs. 5 crore, this financial year, the department had set a target of Rs. 12 crore. She claimed that work worth Rs 5 crore had been completed so far.
She said to provide facilities to the labourers, a MGNREGA Bhawan will come up at every block of the district and work had begun in Sanaur, Bhunerheri, Patiala, Nabha, Ghanaur and Samana blocks.