Centre’s decision on MGNREGA wages infringes federal structure: Bengal

Kolkata, Oct 26 (IANS) The West Bengal government on Wednesday termed “an infringement of the federal structure” the Centre’s alleged move to transfer wages directly to beneficiaries under the Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment Guarantee Act scheme.

“The Centre always made use of state finance departments to disburse funds under the MGNREGA. The departments further distributed the money to beneficiaries through panchayats and other related departments.

“Suddenly, the Centre has communicated to us that they will disburse the money directly to beneficiaries, bypassing the state government,” said state Finance Minister Amit Mitra.

Education Minister Partha Chattopadhyay said: “It is an infringement of the federal structure and they have struck on the backbone of cooperative federalism. We will write to the Prime Minister and other state governments to protest against such decision.”