Topics Covered: Separation of powers between various organs dispute redressal mechanisms and institutions.
Centre within its rights to suspend MPLADS, says Bombay high court:
Recent Bombay High Court ruling:
- The Union government was within its powers to suspend the MPLAD scheme and divert such funds to combat Covid-19.
- Besides, this (Covid-19) is a disaster so the government will have to resort to Disaster Management Act. It is within its powers to invoke the Act.
What’s the issue?
The Union government had resorted to Disaster Management Act to suspend the member of Parliament local area development (MPLAD) scheme in April this year.
- A petition was filed against this in the Court.
About MPLAD scheme:
- Launched in December, 1993.
- Seeks to provide a mechanism for the Members of Parliament to recommend works of developmental nature for creation of durable community assets and for provision of basic facilities including community infrastructure, based on locally felt needs.
- The MPLADS is a Plan Scheme fully funded by Government of India.
- The annual MPLADS fund entitlement per MP constituency is Rs. 5 crore.
- MPs are to recommend every year, works costing at least 15 per cent of the MPLADS entitlement for the year for areas inhabited by Scheduled Caste population and 7.5 per cent for areas inhabited by S.T. population.
- In order to encourage trusts and societies for the betterment of tribal people, a ceiling of Rs. 75 lakh is stipulated for building assets by trusts and societies subject to conditions prescribed in the scheme guidelines.
Release of Funds:
- Funds are released in the form of grants in-aid directly to the district authorities.
- The funds released under the scheme are non-lapsable.
- The liability of funds not released in a particular year is carried forward to the subsequent years, subject to eligibility.
The MPs have a recommendatory role under the scheme.
- The district authority is empowered to examine the eligibility of works, sanction funds and select the implementing agencies, prioritise works, supervise overall execution, and monitor the scheme at the ground level.
- At least 10% of the projects under implementation in the district are to be inspected every year by the district authority.
Recommendation of works:
- The Lok Sabha Members can recommend works in their respective constituencies.
- The elected members of the Rajya Sabha can recommend works anywhere in the state from which they are elected.
- Nominated members of the Lok Sabha and Rajya Sabha may select works for implementation anywhere in the country.
- How is MPLADS connected to Sansad Adarsh Gram Yojana?
- Where can nominated MPs recommend their works?
- Is there any special focus on SC and ST Welfare?
- Difference between grants and loans?
- Implementing agencies.
Critically examine whether MPLADS has helped in bridging the gaps in provisioning of public services?
Sources: Times of India.