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CHAPTER – I

GOOD GOVERNANCE AND


SUSTAINABLE DEVELOPMENT
When people ask the local administration why they were not given food or
land due to them, that is when they are strengthening democracy.By.R.R
Prasad and others.
National Institute of Rural Development (NIRD),Hyderabad

1. Introduction

There is a growing international consensus concerning the role good governance plays in
the attainment of sustainable human development (SHD). UNDP's recently published policy
paper on governance defines governance as the "exercise of political, economic and
administrative authority in the management of country's affairs at all levels". In an era of
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increasing globalization, governments play a critical role to ensure economic competitiveness


and growth, good governance and sustainable development (UNDP, 2003). A key determinant
for successful democratic consolidation is the ability of democratically elected governments to
provide "good governance." There is a growing international consensus concerning the role
good governance plays in the attainment of sustainable human development. The goal of
governance initiatives should be to develop capacities that are needed to realise development
that gives priority to the poor, advances women, sustains the environment and creates
needed opportunities for employment and other livelihoods. It is now widely believed that
good governance and sustainable human development are indivisible. It is also believed that
developing the capacity for good governance can be - and should be - the primary way to
eliminate poverty.

The shift toward sustainable human development (SHD) as the commonly accepted
paradigm for development is still in the making. But policy-makers in more and more countries
are reaching the unavoidable conclusion that development must be people-centered,
equitable distributed and environmentally and socially sustainable. As demonstrated by recent
Human Development Reports, many countries have managed to improve human development
despite economic hardship. However, this progress in human development will not hold unless
reinforced by economic growth. New evidence and theory suggest that growth and equity
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need not be contradictory goals. And there is strong historical evidence that heavy national
investment in improving skills and meeting basic social needs has been a springboard for
sustained economic growth over the decades. Many countries have been able to foster
creation of a 'virtuous cycle' where progress in human development has been stimulated by
economic growth as well as contributing to it. The recognition that good governance is a
condition for sustainable human development makes a primary shift in development thinking.
The shift is, to a large extent, influencing strategies for pursuing accountability reforms and
improving institutional policy.

Experiences in many developing countries have also shown that there are no automatic
links between economic growth and human development. But when these links are forged
with the policies, procedures and determination of good governance, they can be mutually
reinforcing and economic growth will effectively and rapidly improve human development.
Countries that are able to improve governance through increased openness, accountability,
and participation will be better positioned to adapt to globalization and achieve more broadly
based economic growth.

The term good governance has gained currency for two main reasons. Firstly, it has shown
that improving standard of living of the masses in the developing countries, is not in any way
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related to the amount of development aid they receive. Papua New Guinea, Bangladesh, Sierre
Leone and Madagascar are just some stellar examples. It has been realized that strong,
effective and accountable institutions - in the government, in the private sector, in the civil
society – are crucial for rooted, relevant and sustainable efforts in improving the lives of the
masses.

Human development is defined by the UNDP as expanding the choices for all people in
society. This means that men and women - particularly the poor and vulnerable - are at the
centre of the development process. It also means; protection of the life opportunities of future
generations ... and ... the natural systems on which all life depends. This makes the central
purpose of development the creation of an enabling environment in which all can enjoy long,
healthy and creative lives.

Economic growth is a means to sustainable human development - not an end in itself.


Human Development Report 1996 showed that economic growth does not automatically lead
to sustainable human development and the elimination of poverty. For example, countries that
do well when ranked by per capita income often slip down the ladder when ranked by the
human development index. There are, moreover, marked disparities within countries - rich and
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poor alike - and these become striking when human development among indigenous peoples
and ethnic minorities is evaluated separately.

There are five aspects to sustainable human development - all affecting the lives of the
poor and vulnerable:

Empowerment - The expansion of men and women's capabilities and choices increases their
ability to exercise those choices free of hunger, want and deprivation. It also increases their
opportunity to participate in, or endorse, decision-making affecting their lives.

Co-operation - With a sense of belonging important for personal fulfillment, well-being and a
sense of purpose and meaning, human development is concerned with the ways in which
people work together and interact.

Equity - The expansion of capabilities and opportunities means more than income - it also
means equity, such as an educational system to which everybody should have access.
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Sustainability - The needs of this generation must be met without compromising the right of
future generations to be free of poverty and deprivation and to exercise their basic
capabilities.

Security - Particularly the security of livelihood. People need to be freed from threats, such as
disease or repression and from sudden harmful disruptions in their lives.

All development strategies should focus on four critical elements of sustainable human
development: eliminating poverty, creating jobs and sustaining livelihoods, protecting and
regenerating the environment, and promoting the advancement of women. Developing the
capacities for good governance underpins all these objectives.

1.1. What are the fundamental principles of democratic governance?

There are clearly many different forms of democratic governance. Democratic societies
vary a great deal in terms of the institutions and procedures that characterise their specific
governance systems. Academic debate around the meaning of democratic governance shows
increasing awareness of the multiple ways in which different societies give shape to
democracy. As such, the meaning of democracy cannot be derived from dominant Western
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models: it is a concept that is evolving over time as societies grapple with its implementation
and practice.

On the other hand, it does not seem useful to suggest that democratic governance has no
identifiable underlying principles. Adopting a position that ‘anything goes’ under democratic
governance will not necessarily advance the evolution of the concept, nor its practice in
different contexts. What then, if any, could be considered as fundamental principles of
democratic governance? In developing a Democracy Index, Robert Mattes and Richard Calland
(Idasa 2002) suggest the following principles:

• Consensus on the need for democratic governance: agreeing to ‘the rules of the game’
• Participation in popular self-government
• Popular selection of decision-makers
• Popular control over decision-makers
• Protecting citizens’ equality and their ability to control representatives
• An ability to influence the process of addressing economic and social inequality.
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1.2. Attributes of Good Governance

Good governance concerns integrity, efficiency, effectiveness and economy of government


in meeting the ends to which government organization and activity are directed. Good
governance has many attributes:

 It is among other things, participatory, transparent, accountable


 It is effective in making the best use of resources
 It is equitable and promotes the rule of law
 It includes the State, civil society and the private sector (UNDP, 2003).

Governance includes the state, but transcends it by taking in the private sector and civil
society. All three domains are critical for sustaining human development. The state creates a
conducive political and legal environment, the private sector generates jobs and income and
civil society facilitates political and social interaction and mobilizes groups to participate in
economic, social and political activities.
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1.3. Accountability and Transparency in Governance

1.3.1 What is accountability?

Across the world, we find citizens are mobilizing, often locally, to demand better services.
Not by shouting, but by counting. Making sure their governments spend effectively, and keep
their promises. It is not just about people protesting and making noise. This new approach to
citizen action actually involves systematic analysis and intelligent use of data, making sure
their governments spend effectively and keep their promises.

These citizens are demanding accountability from their public institutions. At the heart of
this is getting and using critical information about budgets, expenditures, corruption,
performance, etc. the new breed of citizen voice is thus about using information in a way that
can lead to results.

The concept of accountability – referring to the ways by which individuals or groups are
held responsible for their actions – has become a buzzword in recent years, enjoying broad
currency in debates that extend beyond the narrow disciplines of political theory and
corporate governance. Concerns about accountability are increasingly being raised, from a
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variety of quarters, in relation to the burgeoning ‘third sector’ of civil society organisations
(CSOs) and popular social movements, whose role in contributing to and shaping public life in
communities around the world can no longer be ignored.

Accountability can be defined as the obligation of power-holders to account for or take


responsibility for their actions. “Power-holders” refers to those who hold political, financial or
other forms of power and include officials in government, private corporations, international
financial institutions and civil society organizations. We are concerned specifically on the
accountability of government actors toward citizens and, in particular, toward poor people.
This accountability is a consequence of the implicit ‘social compact’ between citizens and their
delegated representatives and agents in a democracy. A fundamental principle of democracy
is that citizens have the right to demand accountability and public actors have an obligation to
account. As Mulgan (2000) has stated, “those calling for an account are asserting rights of
superior authority over those who are accountable”. Government officials and bureaucrats are
accountable for their (i) conduct and (ii) performance. In other words, they can and should be
held accountable to (i) obey the law and not abuse their powers, and (ii) serve the public
interest in an efficient, effective and fair manner.
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Promoting accountability is an important part of protecting and advancing the public


interest. Accountability might be understood as part of a broader value system that guides
interaction between citizens, between government officials and members of the public seeking
assistance or information, between service-providers and beneficiaries, employers and
employees and so forth. For example, where there is a culture of accountability, a government
official may make a point of reporting back regularly to a community about progress in
establishing a promised health care clinic in their area, even though no law or regulation
enforces such communication.
Accountability is a cornerstone of democratic practice. There are many different levels at
which accountability may be expected to exist in a democratic society. Here are three
examples:
1. When citizens elect a person or party to represent them in parliament (or any political
decision-making body), they should be able to hold these leaders accountable for the
promises they made at election time. In some countries, there is a right to recall elected
representatives if they do not act in accordance with the needs and interests of those who
elected them. But in most countries, citizens do not have formal mechanisms to enforce
the accountability of their representatives between elections. They do, however, have the
power to lobby and protest - and not to re-elect those who have let them down.
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2. Elected representatives, in turn, have the right and duty to hold the executive
accountable. In many democratic systems, there is a legal obligation on the executive arm
of government to explain and justify its decisions and the implementation of these in
terms of the responsibilities conferred on it. Legislatures play a critical role in securing
accountability when they exercise oversight of government on behalf of citizens. They
have the task of making sure that the executive is implementing agreed policies and
spending public money raised through taxes. In this way, the executive is accountable to
elected politicians – within the legislatures – for fulfilling its functions.
3. Democratic societies may also have – or nurture – a culture of accountability. In this
sense, accountability might be understood as part of a broader value system that guides
interaction between citizens, between government officials and members of the public
seeking assistance or information, between service-providers and beneficiaries, employers
and employees and so forth. For example, where there is a culture of accountability, a
government official may make a point of reporting back regularly to a community about
progress in establishing a promised health care clinic in their area, even though no law or
regulation enforces such communication.
Accountability is a complex notion regardless of the actor or entity to which it is applied.
The notion of accountability is particularly complex in relation to civil society organizations
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(CSOs), however, because of the multiplicity of actors with whom civil society engages and to
whom it is therefore accountable. We can speak of ‘upward’ accountability (to funders,
donors, governments or other external actors, often in the context of accounting for resources
or the fulfilment of particular service targets) and ‘downward’ accountability (to
constituents such as community groups, activists, or other beneficiaries of CSO activity). Some
also speak of ‘horizontal’ accountability to refer to the relationship that exists between civil
society actors, who see themselves as part of a public process rather than part of a
competitive culture (as is the case within the business community).

All states have some form of mechanisms in place to promote or ensure accountability of
public servants. Systems of accountability that are internal to the state are often referred to as
“horizontal” mechanisms of accountability (Schedler et al. 1999). These include: (i) political
mechanisms (e.g., constitutional constraints, separation of powers, the legislature and
legislative investigative commissions); (ii) fiscal mechanisms (e.g., formal systems of auditing
and financial accounting); (iii) administrative mechanisms (e.g., hierarchical reporting, norms
of public sector probity, public service codes of conduct, rules and procedures regarding
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transparency and public oversight), and; (iv) legal mechanisms (e.g., corruption control
agencies, ombudsmen and the judiciary) (Goetz and Gaventa, 2001).

Accountability has a certain reflexive quality: we can think of CSO accountability in terms
of its ‘external’ dimension (striving to meet certain established standards of conduct) and in
terms of its ‘internal’ dimension (self-motivated efforts to act in concert with organisational
mission and values to attain prescribed goals). CSO accountability can also be thought of in
both functional and strategic terms, where functional accountability is concerned with
concrete requirements, such as accounting for expended resources and registering immediate
accomplishments, and where strategic accountability focuses upon measuring the longer-term
impact of an organisation’s work upon the larger environment. 1

There are a range of accountability mechanisms that are being used by civil society groups
to proactively and self-critically take responsibility for their organisational structures,
operations, policies and activities. These tools are far from mutually exclusive and, in many
instances, combinations of these techniques are integrated in order to meet the different
demands of ‘upwards’ and ‘downward’ accountability. These include:

1
Ebrahim, Alnoor, ‘Accountability in Practice: Mechanisms for NGOs,’ in World Development, vol. 31, no. 5, 2003. p. 814.
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• Self-regulation mechanisms, such as voluntary (or certified) compliance with codes of


ethics or codes of conduct. National NGO networks in a dozen countries have undergone
thorough participatory processes to articulate the standards expected of NGOs, ranging from
transparent governance structures to hiring practices and communications policies. The idea
behind such self-regulation mechanisms is that the sector itself should be actively engaged
in promoting a certain set of values and norms as part of maintaining a public reputation for
professionalism and high ethical behaviour. One of the main criticisms levelled at self-
regulation approaches is the ‘non-enforceability’ of such mechanisms; however certain
models, such as the one adopted in the Philippines, involve a certification process whereby
teams of evaluators are empowered to grant or revoke certification to CSOs.

• Governing boards, comprised of individuals external to the organisation, that are selected
by and operate according to clearly defined and transparent procedures. The specific tasks
of governing boards vary, but they are generally intended to act as guardians of the
interests of the organisation’s membership or constituency, while also ensuring that the
organisation operates in a way that is in compliance with both statutory obligations and in
accordance with its own mission and values.
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• Standards for disclosure and public reporting, are determined in some countries by
national legislation, but are adopted by CSOs in other contexts on a voluntary basis. Vehicles
such as annual reports, organisational or project evaluations, strategic plans based on
external assessments, and regular communications (newsletters, updates, briefs) can
provide channels for public access to information about the organisation’s work, financial
status, governance structure and operational impact.
• Consultative and participatory mechanisms, that allow for the meaningful involvement
of diverse constituencies (including beneficiaries) in the organisation’s work, from project
planning to evaluations.

There are also two critical ‘built-in’ accountability mechanisms that bear mentioning. The
first is the principle of ‘perform or perish:’ not a single cent secured to undertake CSO
activities is secured on the basis of obligation. Whether funding is derived from a government
agency, individual donor, foundation, business organisation or multilateral institution,
resources will not continue to be available if the CSO is not performing on the basis of its
vision, mission and objectives. (Moreover, sanctions are easily imposed if even basic
accountability requirements are not met.) In contrast, most governments, and inter-
governmental organisations, to a lesser extent, are guaranteed a steady revenue flow from
taxation or from other countries’ annual member contributions.
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A second ‘built-in’ mechanism concerns the effectiveness of civil society advocacy


efforts. Civil society groups that do not have credibility, genuine links to the grassroots level,
and expertise around an issue are automatically limited in their effectiveness when it comes to
advocacy. This is a reflection of the ‘internal’ drive for accountability that characterises many
CSOs – a sense of responsibility deriving from within the group which pushes it to act in
concert with its articulated mission and values in making a meaningful contribution to the
vision for which the organisation exists.

1.3.2 What is social accountability?


Social accountability can be defined as an approach towards building accountability that
relies on civic engagement, i.e., in which it is ordinary citizens and/or civil society
organizations who participate directly or indirectly in exacting accountability. Mechanisms of
social accountability can be initiated and supported by the state, citizens or both, but very
often they are demand-driven and operate from the bottom-up. Social accountability
mechanisms are sometimes referred to as “external” or “vertical” mechanisms of
accountability (in contrast to the more conventional “internal” or “horizontal” mechanisms
of accountability discussed above).
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The concept of accountability applies equally well to all levels of government and to public
services and other agencies that deliver public services to citizens (Paul, 1996). Accountability
stands on three integral pillars: financial, political and administrative. Financial accountability
is the obligation of anyone handling resources, public office or any other position of trust, to
report on the intended and actual use of the resources or of the designated office. This
includes ensuring transparency in the process to achieve that obligation. Administrative
accountability includes critical systems of control internal to the government, which
complements and ensures the proper functioning of checks and balances supplied by the
constitutional government and engaged citizenry. These include civil service standards and
incentives, ethics codes, criminal penalties, and administrative review. Political accountability,
most fundamentally found in an election, is another effective form of oversight. In an electoral
democracy, people have a regular, open method for sanctioning or rewarding those who hold
positions of public trust. One mechanism to achieve this more specific oversight is to have the
two political branches (executive and legislative) watch over each other. In addition,
separating the institution that raises and spends funds from that which actually executes the
spending decision helps ensure that the underlying public interest is served.

An important complementary principle to accountability, transparency comprises all


means of facilitating the citizen’s access to information and also his/her understanding of
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decision-making mechanisms. Transparency is built on the free flow of information: processes,


institutions and information should be directly accessible to those concerned with them, and
enough information should be provided to understand and monitor them. Public sector
transparency begins with the application of clear standards. Development programmes
should be accountable to those who supply the resources, no doubt, but also to the
intended beneficiaries. And nobody has a greater interest in results than those
whom the programme is intended to benefit.

Integrity is a key element that completes the notion of accountability and transparency in
governance. It is defined as incorruptibility, an unimpaired condition of soundness, and is
synonymous to honesty. In terms of public service, integrity requires that holders of public
office should not place themselves under financial and other obligation to outside individuals
or organizations that may influence them in the performance of their official duties. Integrity is
not an end in itself rather a path leading to the effective delivery of the services and
performance of functions which the public is entitled to receive from those who govern them.

Accountability and transparency are indispensable pillars of good governance that compel
the state, private sector and civil society to focus on results, seek clear objectives, develop
effective strategies, and monitor and report on performance. Through accountability and
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transparency, governments (together with civil society and the private sector) can achieve
congruence between public policy, its implementation and the efficient allocation of resources.
The absence of accountability and transparency in governance results, among others, in the
misuse or misallocation of resources. It can lead to inefficiency, waste, and corruption, and
even impede development In many cases, it can also breed injustice and violate human rights.
It causes political discontent and social unrest if left unchecked (CONTACT, 2003).

Traditionally, efforts to tackle the challenge of accountability have tended to concentrate


on improving the “supply-side” of governance using methods such as political checks and
balances, administrative rules and procedures, auditing requirements, and formal law
enforcement agencies like courts and the police. These “top-down” accountability promoting
mechanisms have met with only limited success in many countries – be they developed or
developing. More recently, increased attention has been paid to the “demand side” of good
governance – that is to strengthening the voice and capacity of citizens (especially poor
citizens) to directly demand greater accountability and responsiveness from public officials
and service providers. Enhancing the ability of citizens to engage with public servants and
politicians in a more informed, direct and constructive manner is called as social accountability
practices.
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Why is social accountability important?

There are three main arguments underlying the importance of social accountability –
improved governance, increased development effectiveness, and empowerment.
Each is discussed below. First, the issue of governance. Accountability of public officials is
the cornerstone of good government and a prerequisite for an effective democracy. At the
present time, when notions of citizens’ rights and responsibilities are evolving and expanding,
relations between citizens and their governments are characterized by what some have
termed “a crisis of legitimacy” (Gaventa, 2002) or simply a “governance crisis” (Paul 2002).
Citizens in both the North and South express growing disillusionment with their governments –
citing a lack of responsiveness, abuse of discretion, corruption, favoritism and weak
accountability on the part of public officials and bureaucrats. (Commonwealth Foundation,
1999, Narayan et al. 2000). Especially in developing country contexts, the effectiveness of
conventional “horizontal” mechanisms of accountability has proved limited. As discussed
above, elections, the principal traditional “vertical” mechanism of accountability, have also
proved a weak and blunt instrument for holding government officials and employees
accountable for specific actions. Social accountability mechanisms allow ordinary citizens to
access information, voice their needs, and demand accountability between elections.
Emerging social accountability practices enhance the ability of citizens to move beyond mere
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protest toward engaging with bureaucrats and politicians in a more informed, organized,
constructive and systematic manner, thus increasing the chances of effecting positive change.

Social accountability also contributes to increased development effectiveness. This is


achieved through improved public service delivery and more informed policy design. In
many countries, especially developing ones, the government fails to deliver key essential
services to its citizens due to problems such as: misallocation of resources,
leakages/corruption, weak incentives or a lack of articulated demand. Similarly, governments
often formulate policies in a discretionary and non-transparent manner that goes against the
interests and actual priorities of the poor. These problems are perpetuated because the three
key groups of actors in the public policy and service delivery chain-policy makers, service
providers and citizens have different (sometimes conflicting) goals and incentives,
compounded by information asymmetries and lack of communication. By enhancing the
availability of information, strengthening citizen voice, promoting dialogue and consultation
between the three groups of actors and creating incentives for improved performance, social
accountability mechanisms can go a long way toward improving the effectiveness of service
delivery and making public decision-making more transparent, participatory and pro-poor.
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Since poor people are most reliant on government services and least equipped to hold
government officials to account, they have the most to gain from social accountability
initiatives.

Finally, social accountability initiatives can lead to empowerment, particularly of poor


people. While there is no single definition of empowerment, at its broadest, it can be
understood as the expansion of freedom of choice and action. 18 Research shows that poor
people’s dissatisfaction with government relates largely to issues of responsiveness and
accountability. Poor people report that state institutions are “often neither responsive nor
accountable to the poor” and “not accountable to anyone or accountable only to the rich and
powerful” (Narayan et al. 2000, pp. 172 and 177). By providing critical information on rights
and entitlements and soliciting systematic feedback from poor people, social accountability
mechanisms provide a means to increase and aggregate the voice of disadvantaged and
vulnerable groups. This enhanced voice empowers the poor and increases the chance of
greater responsiveness on the part of the state to their needs. That said, reaching out to poor
people with the support they need to initiate their own social accountability actions and
ensuring that social accountability mechanisms are designed in the interest of the poorest
(and not “captured” by more powerful groups) are key challenges of effective, pro-poor social
accountability.
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Social Accountability is a Right


• the Right to Know
• the Right to Question
• the Right to Participate
• the Right to Better Services
• the Right to Stop Corruption
• the Right to End Poverty
• the Right to Demand that Commitments are Respected
Some working notions of accountability

Accountability (narrow sense) A widely used definition of accountability is ‘the means by which
individuals and organizations report to a recognised authority (or authorities) and are held
responsible for their actions’ (Edwards and Hulme 1996, quoted from Mulgan 2000). This
definition includes several underpinning notions:

• it is external: ‘account to some external authority’;


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• it involves social interaction and exchange: ‘being answerable to someone and accepting of
sanctions’; and
• it implies rights of authority: ‘to call someone to account, demand answers and impose
sanctions’.

Accountability (widely used) denotes a relationship between a rights holder or a legitimate


claim (for instance a public good) and the agents or agencies responsible for fulfilling or
respecting that right by taking specific action, or desisting from particular actions (duty
bearers). In rights-based language, accountability relates to the responsiveness of the ‘duty
bearers’ and the voice of ‘rights holders’ to articulate their needs and claim their rights.

Voice refers to the strength of the impetus decision makers or duty bearers receive from
rights holders. Responsiveness refers to the way in which a development agent – public or
private – perceives the needs and responds to the demands of particular groups, such as the
poor.

Vertical accountability denotes the direct relationship between citizens and their
representatives holding public office primarily through the electoral process but also through
more direct forms of participation and civic engagement.
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Horizontal accountability refers to mechanisms through which different state institutions


hold each other to account on behalf of the people. Horizontal accountability primarily implies
the executive being answerable to the legislature, the courts, and special agencies of
restraint, e.g. human rights commissions; ombudsmen/public protectors; auditors-general;
independent electoral commissions; independent central banks; independent revenue
authorities; and anticorruption agencies.

Upward accountability is the answerability of lower ranks to a higher-level authority, for


instance a local administration which is accountable to a line ministry.

Downward accountability is the answerability of higher ranks to a lower-level authority, for


instance a line ministry which is accountable for support to extension services.

Social accountability denotes the answerability of organisations to the people. It pertains


primarily to public administration but can equally mean the accountability of development
partners to ultimate beneficiaries in developing countries.
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Mutual accountability denotes a reciprocal accountability relationship based on the notion


of a contract. It has become an important concept in particular in the aid relationship. The
Paris Declaration stipulates that ‘Donors and partners are accountable for development
results: A major priority for partner countries and donors is to enhance mutual accountability
and transparency in the use of development resources. This also helps strengthen public
support for national policies and development assistance’.

Outward accountability describes the accountability of domestic development agents to


external donors and development partners, sometimes in tension with, or at the expense of,
their domestic accountabilities.

Domestic accountability denotes the range of domestic accountability relationships (see


vertical, horizontal, downward, upward and social).
Source: capacity.org Issue 31, August 2007

1.4. Role of auditing in public finance management

Over the years, auditing has retained its significance in public finance and, as such,
Supreme Audit Institutions (SAI) receive constitutional recognition in many countries
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around the world. As watchdogs of public finances, the public auditors act as critical links in
enforcing the accountability of executive agencies to national and state legislatures and
through them to the general public. The public sector auditor reviews financial management of
public sector entities to ensure that transactions have been undertaken with due regard to
propriety and regularity.

Auditing is an integral part of an institutional framework supporting good governance and


the realization of a country’s welfare measures and poverty eradication goals. Social welfare
programs and other targeted poverty eradication programs in developing countries are
characterized by their access to limited resources. To achieve their goals, therefore, these
programmes depend greatly on the efficient and effective utilization of these limited
resources. Within this framework, the role of the public auditor in monitoring the utilization of
program resources is critical. A vigilant auditor can contribute greatly to the achievement of
social development programs by limiting corruption and strengthening the accountability of
responsible agencies.

Modern day public auditors perform a variety of audits aimed at satisfying different
financial management goals. Financial audits assess the accuracy and fairness of both the
accounting procedures utilized by a government agency and the financial statements reported
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by the agency. Compliance audits assess whether funds were used for the purposes for
which they were appropriated and in compliance with relevant laws and regulations.
Performance audits analyze cost-effectiveness (economy), operational efficiency, and the
general effectiveness of government programs in achieving their objectives. There has been a
trend in recent years among SAIs toward increasing the number of performance audits as
these audits are seen as revealing more about the effectiveness of government operations.
However, a comprehensive audit framework requires that all three types of audits (financial,
compliance, and performance) be combined to provide a complete overview of public financial
management.

1.4.1 Institutional Weaknesses in SAIs

Despite its critical role in enforcing accountability, SAIs are beset by severe institutional
and operational limitations. In some countries, SAIs are not created by legislation that provides
adequate independence and freedom from executive interference. Even in cases in which SAIs
have sufficient auditing mandates10, they may lack additional investigative powers to enable
them to follow-up on apparent violations and ensure the prosecution of relevant agencies or
individuals. Similarly, SAIs in many countries do not have adequate powers to decide what
should be audited or how the audit findings should be presented. In many developing
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countries, SAIs lack skilled staff to perform the tasks expected of a modern auditor, such as
detecting fraud using information technology. Similarly, financial constraints on SAIs often
mean that they lack adequate infrastructure (office space, computers, and vehicles for
transport), which further hampers the effective conduct of their work.

In many countries, SAIs report their findings to legislatures and particularly the public
accounts committee (PAC) within legislatures. Due to time constraints, the PAC is able to
consider only some of the audit reports11 and audit findings — and poor coordination with the
SAI may prevent the PAC from taking up the most critical findings. The audit reports in these
cases are then shelved and no action is taken against agencies or individuals that have broken
the law or committed fraud.

The Lima Declaration of Guidelines on Auditing Precepts was adopted at the Ninth
International Conference of SAIs in Peru in 1977. This declaration sets out the internationally
accepted basic tenets of public sector auditing, including emphasizing the need for SAIs to
have independence from the executive, defining the audit powers that should be granted to
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SAIs, detailing the relationship that SAIs should have with the executive and with the
legislature, and explaining the nature of the reporting that should be carried out.

In 2001, more than two decades after the adoption of the Lima Declaration, the
International Organization of Supreme Audit Institutions (INTOSAI) published the
results of a survey conducted in 113 member countries (excluding the European Organization
of SAIs, which had previously been surveyed). Using the parameters set out in the Lima
Declaration, the survey examined the independence (or lack thereof) of SAIs in each country.
The INTOSAI Task Force report summarizes its findings by stating, “…it can be concluded that
a considerable number of the SAIs surveyed are not really in a position to fulfill their mandates
in a manner consistent with the requirements of the Lima Declaration of Guidelines on
Auditing Precepts”.”

In 2004, the IBP conducted a survey in 36 developing countries (drawn largely from Africa,
Eastern Europe, Asia, and Latin America) to assess transparency in national budgetary
processes. The survey focused in part on key issues concerning public disclosures of audit
findings. Respondents in each of the countries covered in the survey were experts drawn from
civil society organizations. The results of the IBP survey reinforce the concerns that the earlier
INTOSAI survey highlighted regarding the institutional and other weaknesses of SAIs in many
32

countries. As the responses to the survey cited below show, public audit systems can often
exclude civil society organizations – and, in some cases, even national legislatures – from
effectively discussing major audit findings.

• Accessibility: The results of the IBP survey show that not all the annual audit reports are
made public. In 12 of the countries surveyed, citizens did not have access to the auditor’s
reports even though the reports were produced in 11 of these countries.17 In 19 of the
countries surveyed, the year-end audit reports of departmental expenditures that are
released to the public do not include an executive summary.
• Timing: Only 6 of the 36 countries included in the IBP survey reported that the SAI
produced its attestation report within six months of the end of the fiscal year as
recommended by The OECD Best Practices for Budget Transparency. In 15 countries, final
audited accounts of national departments are either not completed within two years after
the end of the fiscal year or are not released to the public; in 8 countries, final audit
accounts are released more than a year after the end of the fiscal year.
• Comprehensiveness: In 19 of the countries surveyed by IBP, the SAI either does not
release to the public reports of audits of extra-budgetary funds or it does not audit such
funds. No audit report is viewed or scrutinized by a committee of the legislature in 4
countries, while in 11 countries only some of the reports are viewed and scrutinized.
33

• Follow-up: In 7 of the countries surveyed by IBP, the executive does not report (either to
the legislature or publicly) on the steps it has taken to address audit recommendations nor
does it release findings that indicate a need for remedial action. In 23 of the countries
surveyed by IBP, neither the SAI nor the legislature release to the public a report that tracks
actions taken by the executive to address audit recommendations.

It is thus obvious that in their current form, audits do not always provide a direct measure
of government performance in those specific areas in which citizens have the greatest
interest. For example, the citizen might be interested in measuring the performance of the
government on health policy. The usual methodology employed by the government auditor
when auditing the health department will comment on the veracity of the funds expended for
health programs but will rarely comment on the appropriateness of the government’s health
policy. How then can a citizen measure whether health programs reflect health policy – and
whether the underlying health policy responds adequately to the nation’s health needs?

There are two ways to increase the ability of audits to provide information on government
performance that is directly relevant to citizens. First, the scope of audit mandates can be
increased and audit methodologies developed that will enable auditors to offer some
comments on the government policies that underpin agency performance. A second way to
34

improve the ability of audits to provide information directly relevant to citizens is by allowing
citizens to participate in the conduct of audits. As citizens will look for specific measures of
performance, they will use their access to (and participation in) audit institutions to obtain
information on those measures that they are interested in reviewing. Allowing citizen
participation in audits will require that audit institutions create spaces in which citizens can
meaningfully participate in audit programs and thereby obtain specific measures of
government performance.

The audit sector faces substantial challenges. Returning to the spirit and practice of
‘audire’ — the public hearings of accounts — will assist the sector in meeting several of these
challenges. Greater collaboration between SAIs and civil society organizations can assist SAIs
in overcoming some of the challenges that they face. An enhanced partnership between SAIs
and civil society organizations will also help to insert the practice of audire – the public
‘hearing’ (meaning examination) of government accounts – into public auditing. It is not
argued that civil society organizations can replace formal audit institutions. Instead, it si felt
that greater interaction between SAIs and civil society organizations is likely to lead to
stronger budgetary oversight by both sets of institutions – and that this interaction will
strengthen a country’s governance framework and the effectiveness and efficiency of its
antipoverty programs.
35

1.5 Barriers to Accountability

There are two sets of barriers, one that could weaken the power of voice and the other
that can render the compact ineffective. Voice, for example, will not work when citizens/clients
do not have the necessary information or knowledge to make it effective. This can happen
when people have limited knowledge in a specific area and are therefore unable to digest new
information and make use of it. Even if they are educated, but have no access to information,
then again the outcome will be no different. Thus, governments can create barriers to voice by
denying people knowledge about their rights and entitlements, and standards and norms
pertaining to services. Even when such information is available, if citizens do not have a
sufficient background for understanding this information, it can potentially act as a barrier to
voice. The poor often tend to suffer from this handicap.
36

There are equally important barriers to collective action as a form of voice. Collective
action calls for time, organizational skills, and resources. It requires capacity to identify key
issues and knowledge about possible remedies. The poor typically are weak in terms of these
capabilities. When they are struggling to survive, they may neither have the ability nor the
incentive to invest in collective action. It is the reason why intermediary organizations (such as
NGOs) enter the scene and organize the poor and marginalized communities. Collective action
is easier to organize for the better off sections of society. Nevertheless, it is an uphill task even
for them because of the “free rider” problem and the indifferent characteristic of many middle
class citizens who seek easy exits. It is not uncommon, for example, for people to pay a bribe
to get their work done.

Barriers to information and collective action could render voice ineffective when citizens
try to influence service providers directly (the short route). Delivery of services to the poor and
the accountability of the providers to the people will not improve under these conditions. To
conclude, unless the barriers to information and collective action are somehow eliminated, and
citizens’ voice is strengthened enough to weaken the grip of collusion and corruption in the
machinery of government, it is unrealistic to expect that public accountability will improve.
37

The civil society initiatives for accountability presented below fall into five categories: (1)
community management of local services, (2) independent budget analysis and tracking, (3)
public hearings, (4) public interest litigation, and (5) citizen report cards on services. A brief
description of each follows.

a) Community Management of Local Services

There are many public services that lend themselves to direct monitoring and supervision
by local communities. In many cases, citizens and users of the services could participate in
aspects of managing and monitoring such services. A good example is the local school where
the parent-teacher association could actively participate in planning and supervising the
school programs. Similarly, the maintenance of drinking water facilities and community toilets
has benefited from the participation of user groups. A recent case from the slums of Mumbai,
India has shown how local communities have pitched in to manage and maintain the newly
built toilet facilities. NGOs and local communities have played a lead role in this project and
the government has funded it through a World Bank project.
38

The initiative for community management has come largely from NGOs working in the field
in local communities. Their primary interest is in promoting community participation in local
development programs and services so as to make them more relevant to the people and
more sustainable. But it turns out that such participation is also a powerful means to hold the
government or service provider accountable to the people. When the latter influence the
design of a service and monitor its delivery or contribute to the maintenance of public
facilities, they have a strong interest in ensuring that the agencies involved are responsive to
their problems and needs. Being closer to the scene and with a seat at the table, they can
observe and challenge abuses and poor performance. Community management of local
services can thus act as an aid to accountability, and to a large extent, compensate for the
inherent problems in monitoring local activities that higher level officials encounter. In several
countries, governments and international donors are now encouraging and facilitating
community management of public services and facilities.

b) Independent Budget Analysis and Tracking

Budgets are the basic instrument of governments to mobilize, allocate and monitor scarce
resources (money and personnel). By bringing government budgets under public scrutiny, civil
39

society groups are able to raise important questions about taxation, public expenditure, and
the distribution of benefits to different groups of people. This initiative, of course, calls for
special skills in terms of analysis and evaluation. Examples of civil society groups engaging in
budget analysis and using the findings for advocacy are therefore not many. But wherever it
has been attempted, the process has resulted in informing and educating both the people and
the authorities (legislators and officials) on the implications of the allocations and on the need
to modify them to achieve the stated policy objectives. Budget analysis can also be used to
advocate reforms, especially with reference to the poor, as their interests are seldom
adequately addressed in the complex bargaining processes behind the budgetary allocations.

A classic case of such budget analysis where citizens are actively involved comes from
Porto Alegre, Brazil. Here communities participate by articulating their needs and priorities.
This is an open process that helps the government to listen to the people’s voice and arrive at
allocations that take into account public concerns. Needless to say, the process presupposes a
government that is inclined to listen and seek ideas from the people. It is also a time
consuming process that calls for a great deal of involvement by community groups. Broad
based budget analysis has been carried out in South Africa under the auspices of a local NGO.
The International Centre on Budget and Policy Priorities in Washington DC is engaged in
strengthening civil society capabilities to undertake budget analysis in developing countries.
40

A more limited form of budget analysis has been attempted by DISHA, an NGO in the
Indian state of Gujarat. The focus here has been on analysis of the budget from the standpoint
of the poor, especially the tribal population. The findings are used by the NGO to engage in
dialogues with elected representatives and officials. The findings are publicized through the
media in order to create public support for the proposals made by the NGO.

A third example is from Africa where public expenditure tracking has been attempted to
monitor the effectiveness of public spending on services for the poor. The World Bank has led
this effort in Uganda and other countries, but the approach lends itself to be used as an
initiative to increase accountability. Budget analysis, of course, is primarily a means to
improve the process of resource allocation by governments and to nudge them to be effective.
But when civil society groups engage governments in this exercise, it can act as a force for
greater public accountability.

c) Public Hearings

Public hearings are a well-known mechanism for eliciting the views and concerns of the
people on a variety of issues. Regulatory agencies use this approach in the determination of
41

tariff rates and other policies. In recent years, NGOs and other civil society groups have
organized public hearings as a means to demand increased public accountability towards the
poor and marginalized communities. Being an open process, it attracts the attention of the
media and lends itself to being used as an aid to advocacy to improve the conditions of the
poor. NGOs act as intermediaries in the process as the poor are not equipped with the skills
and organization necessary to make a success of public hearings. When people face highly
localized problems, it is possible to stimulate the poor to participate in public hearings.

A documented case from India narrates how MKSS, an NGO based in Rajasthan, India used
public hearings in rural areas to publicize the abuses in public employment programs. This
adverse publicity led to the authorities taking corrective action that benefited the local
communities. It also gave a strong push to the right to information movement that was
gaining momentum in the country in the early 1990s. Public hearings were used in this case to
demand accountability in the programs that are supposed to benefit the poor. In the absence
of the resultant pressure, abuses in the employment program might have continued unabated.

d) Public Interest Litigation (PIL)


42

Public interest litigation refers to legal action taken in a court of law for enforcing the
public interest or to protect the legal rights and liabilities of the public or a community of
people. The term, PIL, was first used in the USA in the 1960s to describe a legal development
that sought to widen civic participation in governance. In some developing countries like India,
PIL has been widely used to get the courts to direct governments to take corrective steps to
restore the rights and entitlements of the poor. An independent judiciary and a democratic
constitution are essential prerequisites for PIL to succeed. PIL is a potent accountability
mechanism when the executive and legislative branches of government are unable or
unwilling to protect the rights and entitlements of the poor. Individual citizens, especially the
poor, will find it difficult to resort to PIL to hold the government accountable for the denial of
their rights simply because of the time and costs involved. As in public hearings, it is NGOs
and organized civic groups that make use of PIL in most countries.

e) Citizen Report Cards – An Accountability Tool

A citizen report card (CRC) is a new way to rate different service providers from a user
perspective and to utilize this information to make the providers more accountable to the
people. User feedback is a cost effective way for a government to find out whether its services
are reaching the people, especially the poor. Users of a public service can tell the government
43

a lot about the quality and value of a service. Surprisingly, this is not a method that is known
to or used by most developing country governments. The continuing neglect of the quality of
services is in part a consequence of this gap. This is in sharp contrast to the practice of
seeking “customer feedback" that is common in the competitive market place.

A CRC on public services is not just one more opinion poll. Report cards reflect the actual
experience of people with a wide range of public services. The survey on which a report card is
based covers only those who have had experiences in the use of specific services and
interactions with the relevant public agencies or other aspects of public services. Users
possess fairly accurate information, for example, on whether a public agency actually solved
their problems or whether they had to pay bribes to officials. Of course, errors of recall cannot
be ruled out. But the large numbers of responses that sample surveys generate lend credibility
to the findings. Stratified random sample surveys using well structured questionnaires are the
basis on which report cards are prepared. It is generally assumed that people from similar
backgrounds in terms of education, culture, etc., are likely to use comparable standards in
their assessments. But these standards may be higher for higher income groups than for the
poor whose expectations about public services tend to be much lower. Dividing households
into relatively homogenous categories is one way to minimize the biases that differing
expectations can cause.
44

The Public Affairs Centre (PAC), founded in Bangalore, has taken initiative to prepare CRCs.
The first report card on Bangalore’s public agencies in 1994 covered municipal services, water
supply, electricity, telecom, and transport. Since then, PAC has brought out report cards on
several other cities, rural services and also on specific sectoral services such as health care.
The findings of the first CRC on Bangalore were most striking. Almost all of the public service
providers received low ratings from the people. Agencies were rated and compared in terms of
public satisfaction, corruption, and responsiveness. The media publicity that the findings
received and the public discussions that followed brought the issue of public services out in
the open. Civil society groups began to organize themselves to voice their demands for better
performance. Some of the public agencies responded to these demands and took steps to
improve their services. The inter-agency comparisons and the associated public glare seem to
have contributed to this outcome. When the second report card on Bangalore came out in
1999, these improvements were reflected in the somewhat better ratings that the agencies
received. Still several agencies remained indifferent and corruption levels continued to be
high.

The third CRC on Bangalore in 2003 has shown a surprising turnaround in the city’s
services. It noted a remarkable rise in the citizen ratings of almost all the agencies. Not only
45

did public satisfaction improve across the board, but problem incidence and corruption seem
to have declined perceptibly in the routine transactions between the public and the agencies
(See the charts below). It is clear that more decisive steps have been taken by the agencies to
improve services between 1999 and 2003.

What accounts for this distinct turnaround in Bangalore’s public services? What lessons
can we learn from this experiment? Needless to say, without deliberate interventions by the
government and the service providers, improvement in services would not have taken place.
But the key question is - what made them act? A whole complex of factors seems to have
been at work. The new Chief Minister of the State who took over in 1999 was very much
concerned about the public dissatisfaction with the city’s services. He set in motion new
mechanisms such as the “Bangalore Agenda Task Force,” a forum for public-private
partnership that helped energize the agencies and assist in the upgrading of services. Civil
society groups and the media supported and monitored these efforts. What is significant is
that the initial trigger for these actions came largely from the civil society initiative called
“citizen report cards.”

What are the pre-conditions for such civil society initiatives to work? It is obvious that
these initiatives are more likely to succeed in a democratic and open society. Without
46

adequate space for participation, CRCs are unlikely to make an impact. A tradition of activism
within the civil society can also help. People should be willing to organize themselves to
engage in advocacy and seek reforms supported by credible information. Political and
bureaucratic leaders must have the will and resources to respond to such information and the
call for improved governance by the people. Last, but not least, the credibility of those who
craft CRCs is equally important. The initiators of the exercise should be seen as non-partisan
and independent. They need to maintain high professional standards. The conduct of the
survey and the interpretation of the findings should be done with utmost professional
integrity.

When service providers and governments on their own improve their services and
accountability, initiatives such as CRCs may not be necessary. Even under these conditions, a
report card can be an effective means for civil society groups to monitor the performance of
government and its service providers. Public agencies can on their own initiate report cards on
their performance as indeed some in Bangalore have done. But when a government is
indifferent to these concerns, advocacy based on a CRC can act as an accountability tool to
challenge the government to perform better.
47

Not too long ago, public demands for accountability and transparency in governance were
given less priority. The end of the cold war era, rising democratization of countries and
emergence of strong civil societies and open media are creating new and more radical
demands of transparency and accountability in the public sector. These demands are centered
on stronger monitoring and evaluation and more rigorous audit of public expenditure. At the
same time, an increasingly active citizenry is championing the call for responsive government,
for policies that foster equity and development, for a budgetary planning process which is
open and subject to scrutiny, for eradication of graft and corruption, and for enhanced and
demonstrated results. However, despite these recent positive trends, studies show that many
developing countries perform poorly with respect to holding its government to account and in
efforts to control corruption, in the equitable distribution of services and in effective
decentralization. Therefore, the ability of the traditional accountability mechanisms to effect
change on the functioning, performance and transparency of governments are increasingly
being openly debated.

1.6 Role of Civil Society Organizations in Audits

Over the last 10 years, the capacity of civil society organizations to understand, analyze,
and influence public budgeting has grown dramatically. In more than 60 developing countries
48

in Africa, Asia, and Latin America, non-governmental organizations (NGO), think tanks
(research organizations), community and grassroots organizations have been involved in the
growing movement to make public budgeting more transparent and accountable.

Civil society organizations engaged in budget-focused work contribute to public


expenditure management and oversight in several ways. First, they provide one of the few
sources of critical and independent information on the impact of the budget on poor and low-
income citizens. Second, they can help build budget literacy among citizens and facilitate
discussions and debates on budgetary issues within civil society. Third, by collating,
synthesizing, and disseminating information on public finances, budget groups add new data
into the budget process. Finally, civil society budget groups provide training on public finances
to citizen groups, the media, and legislatures, thereby strengthening the capacity of all of
these groups to exercise oversight over budget process and to demand accountability from
government agencies. Although civil society is a relatively new actor in public budgeting,
evidence that they are having a positive impact on budget decision-making and
implementation is beginning to emerge.

1.7 Mechanisms for Public Accountability in India


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Democratic governments derive their legitimacy from the constitutions that create them.
Furthermore, constitutions provide framework of checks and balances among the government
institutions that derive their mandates from the constitutions (e.g., the legislature, executive,
and judiciary).

In a democracy, the State is the servant of the people. It performs many functions
essential for the welfare and development of its citizens and provides an array of essential
services many of which are “public goods.” The State collects taxes from the people to
discharge its functions and is accountable to society for proper use of the resources entrusted
to it. Periodic elections are seen as the ultimate lever that citizens can use to hold those
wielding power in the name of the state accountable for their performance. But the dilemma is
that while much happens between elections in terms of transactions between the state and its
citizens, there is little an individual citizen can do in the short run if things go wrong in the
discharge of functions or services by the state’s agencies. Waiting for the next election is of
little help to a citizen who needs immediate corrective action. The problem arises because the
citizens have no “exit” unlike in the market place where they can exit from one supplier of a
good or service to another. When citizens have no exit option, they can only vent their feelings
through “voice.” Voice may take the form of protest, non-cooperation or the rejection of
political representatives through the ballot process.2 Collective action in any of these forms
50

can act as an instrument of accountability, signaling the authorities that they must listen to
the people’s voice and take remedial action. Of these different forms of voice, the ballot
process is the most difficult to access because of the long time gap between elections. Other
forms of collective action (a form of voice) are more easily resorted to when people face
problems continually with the functioning of governments, especially with the delivery of
services.

India is a large democratic country of a billion people. It has a federal government at the
center, 27 state governments, and over 200,000 (urban and rural) local governments. Most of
the traditional mechanisms of accountability, both vertical and horizontal, are present in India.
As a parliamentary democracy, it has elected legislatures that have oversight functions over
the Executive and an independent judiciary that can hold both the legislative and executive
arms of the state accountable. It has a variety of independent authorities and commissions
that perform accountability function vis-à-vis different parts of the government. The electoral
process, the ultimate accountability mechanism in a democratic country, has performed well
over 50 years. Nevertheless, all is not well with public accountability in India. Formal
accountability systems are put in place for the most part, but they are not necessarily made to
work (Paul, 2003).
51

One of the dominant features of rural development strategies in India is the adoption of
“democratic decentralization” as the key approach. An initiative in this direction was taken in
the form of community development programme (CDP), which has ultimately resulted into the
establishment of a three-tier system of Panchayati Raj (local self government). One of the
challenges facing decentralized governance in India today is how to make panchayat
leadership accountable to the public through transparency in its operations. In rural areas,
poor people do not have the power, knowledge, and incentives to demand better services and
public accountability. The problem is compounded by the fact that the measurement and
quantification of the benefits and adequacy of services are often difficult. All these are reasons
why the performance and accountability of the panchayats remain weak in rural India.

It has been recognized that formal democracy (regular elections, multi-party system,
independent judiciary, etc.) in developed and developing countries does not necessarily
address the needs and aspirations of all citizens. These institutions get “captured” by
organized vested interests and the practice of “majority opinion”, let alone those of large
sections of citizens who no longer care to vote. The elected representatives – parliamentarians
and legislators – have become increasingly “irrelevant” in this system of formal democracy.
For example in countries like Britain, India, Australia, the executive function, led by the head
of the state and operated by a large entrenched bureaucracy, is in ‘supreme” control of all
52

power and authority (Tandon, 2003). There is a need for dynamic and constant issue-based
dialogue between citizens (not just as voters) and their elected representatives, which can
considerably improve the governance of democracy.

It is in this context that experiments in local governance being carried out in India after
passage of the Constitution (73rd Amendment) is creating new possibilities. Local bodies –
Panchayats and Municipalities – as institutions of local governance are arenas where new
practices in governance are being attempted. These local bodies are being promoted as locally
rooted institutions of governance. As newly elected representatives, women, dalits and other
marginalized castes are showing the way in India and are performing their public roles for the
first time in history. These local experiments in governance perhaps can present interesting
principles, approaches, methods and tools for effective governance of democracy at national
and global levels. The challenge today is to reform formal institutions of democracy in such a
manner that the governance function becomes the joint responsibility of citizens and their
representatives (Tandon, 2003).

Good local governance requires working towards:

• Informed and aware citizens


53

• Local capacity to take decisions equitably and democratically


• Local capacity to manage resources efficiently and equitably
• Effective citizen involvement
• Competent representatives and officials
• Accountability for actions

Governments are facing an ever-growing demand to be more accountable and socially


responsible and the people are becoming more assertive about their rights to be informed and
to influence governments' decision-making processes. Faced with these vociferous demands,
the executive and the legislature are looking for new ways to evaluate their performance. Civil
society organisations are also undertaking "Social Audits" to monitor and verify the social
performance claims of the organisations and institutions (Kurien-
http://www.sasanet.org/documents/Tools/Social%20Audit.pdf )

1.8 Transparency:

Transparency is a very important element of strengthening a community. The word


"transparent" here means the ability to see through something. When civil servants try to do
things (i.e. make decisions, allocate resources) in secrecy, hiding their activities from the
54

people, they are not being transparent. This promotes mistrust, apathy, and marginalisation. .
Laws, such as the "Freedom of Information Act," or similar laws, which ensure that details of
government spending must be of public record, available to the people, are intended to
promote governmental transparency, although some officials will attempt to subvert the spirit
of such laws. People have a right and a responsibility to know what is going on. If you hide a
problem, cover it up or deny that it is there; you surely hinder its solution. If, instead, you
uncover it, admit it, and honestly examine it, you are well on the way to solving the problem.
Transparency strengthens.

1.8.1 What is transparency?


As the word itself suggests, transparency is about openness. In terms of democratic
governance systems, it is about being able to see what decisions are being made and how
they are made, as well as if and how decisions are implemented once they are agreed to.
Access to information law is critical to transparency. But transparency is not an end in itself; it
is a means to an end. More than anything, transparency is about creating the “political space”
for people to defend and exercise their rights.

1.8.2 Without transparency:


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• citizens are unable to monitor the affairs of their elected representatives;


• decision-making in the legislature, executive or judiciary can be tainted by hidden interests
and agendas;
• legislatures do not have the information they need to exercise oversight over the executive;
and
• citizens cannot access the information they require to participate effectively in the
democratic process.
1.8.3 Transparency is strengthened when:
• critical decision-making fora are open to public and media attendance;
• obligations are placed on political office-bearers to disclose their interests;
• the right of the media to disseminate information on the affairs of government is protected;
• regular, accurate and user-friendly information on government plans, proposals and policies
is available and accessible to the public and media;
• the executive has the duty to provide regular, accessible reports on its performance in the
public domain;
56

• there is public access to independent audit reports on government spending; and


• para-statal bodies are subject to account for their performance and fiscal management in
the public domain.
Transparency defines a certain relationship - one would not talk about transparency if
there wouldn’t be two parts of the same coin: the representatives and the represented. The
authors of a study on „Corruption in Local Public Administration” argue that transparency
derives from the constitutional right of citizens to information: the right of the individual to
access any public interest information cannot be violated (Giurgiu et all, 2002). An interesting
definition of transparency was developed in the “Report on the Integrity and Transparency of
Local Public Administration”. Transparency signifies “the set of instruments through which
citizens hold accountable the public administration for the activities realized in their service”
(Transforma, 2004, pp. 7, own translation). The same study identifies two way of
operationalizing this concept: (1) ensuring citizen’s access to public interest information, and
(2) participation of citizens in the process of adopting normative acts and in the public
meetings. Transparency is built on the free flow of information. Processes, institutions and
57

information are directly accessible to those concerned with them, and enough information is
provided to understand and monitor them.

1.8.4 General Transparency of the Local Public Institutions

On the general level, transparency of the local public institutions fits the definition
accepted earlier: “the set of instruments through which citizens hold accountable the public
administration for the activities realized in their service”. Still, it needs further elaboration. The
general transparency of the local public institutions refers to three key elements:

• openness towards citizens,


• decisional transparency towards citizens, and
• mechanisms of accountability and responsibility.

The first element, openness, means here openness towards the public at large about a
public institution’s structure and functions, fiscal policy intentions, involving ready access to
reliable, comprehensive information on the institution’s activities. Anca Daniela Giurgiu et all
argue that the public authorities, according to their competencies, are obliged to ensure the
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correct information of citizens upon public matters, but also in personal problems. The
problem is of higher importance in the context of local governments and local representatives
because very idea of their mandate is the concern with matters of local community or society2.
This we could consider as a first component of transparency. As a second element we
could talk about is decisional transparency towards citizens - a democratic government
must offer to citizens the opportunity to understand its operations and participate in making
decisions on local public issues (Soós, 2001, pp. 15)3. A third component of transparency could
be the mechanisms of accountability and responsibility: people holding representatives
accountable for their actions through control institutions and holding them responsible by
means of not re-election (referring to the legal framework of the role of the local counselors
and the mayor). Indicators of transparency at this level are numerous. Here are just some
of them: (1) information brochures (publicly accessible ones) about the structure, composition
and functions of the public administration, published by the institution or by NGO’s; (2)
existence of a separate public relations office for public at large besides the one that is meant
to keep relations with media and other institutions/organizations); (3) meetings with the mass
media and the existence of a newspaper published by the local government about decisions;

2
For example the Romanian local administration law stipulates the mandatory public character of the local council meetings, except the few cases provided by law or in the case that the council
decides with majority of votes upon the secrecy of the discussion.
3
In Romanian case this can also refer to the functioning of the departments that are dealing with the implementation of the Law on Access to Information and the Law on Decisional Transparency.
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(4) systematic appearance in newspapers of local decisions; (5) public meetings with citizens4;
(6) efficiency, transparency and responsibility in the preparation, execution and control of the
budget; (7) usage of public funds through the process of public acquisitions5.

1.9 Why is access to information important in democracy?

If one accepts that one of the pillars of democracy is public participation, it follows then
that access to information becomes an important factor in enriching the process of public
participation in policy matters. Only an informed citizenry can effectively take part in policy
formulation exercises on issues that will affect their lives. In a way access to information
creates political space for the governed and enables them to engage in the governance and
democratic process in ways that are far beyond the confines of casting a vote once every five
years. The by-products of a free flow of information are an open society and the possibility to
maintain accountability of those who exercise public power.

4
Also, the law on local public administration obliges councilors to periodically organize meetings with citizens and to have audiences. Each councilor and vice mayor are obliged to present a yearly
activity report, which has to be made public by the secretary.
5
The focus here rests in strengthening the national legislation, that refers to acquisitions and procedures, for promoting an efficient, opened and transparent process of acquisitions.
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CHAPTER – II

SOCIAL AUDIT: CONCEPT AND SCOPE


“The main difference between success and failure is… the degree to which poor people
themselves are involved in determining the quality and the quantity of the services they
receive.”
World
Development Report, World Bank, 2004
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“The people have a right to know, a right to question, a collective Constitutional right to
receive an answer.”

Aruna Roy, MKSS Rajasthan, India

2. Introduction

One approach to strengthen good governance through a process, which promotes


transparency and accountability – is Social Audit. According to Charles Medoiver (quoted by
Mahipal, 1998), the concept of social audit starts from the principle that in a democracy the
decision makers should account for the use of their powers and that their powers should be
used as far as possible with the consent and understanding of all concerned.

Is accountability to intended beneficiaries a realistic objective? The more a programme is


aimed at poverty reduction the more likely it is that the intended beneficiaries are poorly
informed, unorganized and voiceless. Building this kind of accountability is part of building a
participatory civil society. Evidence alone cannot educate and organize, but reliable,
actionable evidence is a necessary condition. And evidence that is shared systematically with
communities, service providers and the media can help strengthen constituencies for service
62

accountability at community, district, provincial and national levels. Social audits are just
such an effort to insure both accountability and results by systematic building of
the community voice into the evaluation process. The social audit process is
intended as a means for social engagement, transparency and communication of
information, leading to greater accountability of decision-makers: representatives,
managers and officials.

2.1 History and Current Practice

The etymology dictionary explains that the term audit originates from the Latin word
audire, which means “to hear.” Audire in ancient Rome referred to the “hearing of accounts,”
a process in which one official compared his records with those of another official. As many of
the parties interested in the audit findings were illiterate, audits were presented orally. In
ancient times, emperors used to recruit persons designated as auditors to get feedback about
the activities undertaken by the kings in their kingdoms. These auditors used to go to
common places to listen to citizens’ opinions about various matters, namely, behaviour of
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palace employees, incidence to tax, image of local officials, etc. But in the modern day, audit
is an independent evaluation of the activities and programmes being implemented by an
organization, on the basis of accepted principles of accounting based on certain norms. Thus,
audit is a comparison between the performance of a certain activity and reasonable norms.

The phrase "social audit" was first used in the 1950s. Much early work took the form of
external investigations to assess the impact of large corporations on their work-force,
consumers and the community. This continued, examining the impact of plant closures and of
investment or relocation decisions and, increasingly, uncovering the ethical behaviour and
environmental impact of business corporations. Increasing numbers of corporations now
accept the notion of "corporate social responsibility" and have developed substantial
community support programmes.

More recently companies have been required to report on their environmental impact and
few developments can now go ahead without an environmental impact audit. New standards
for environmental reporting have been introduced (e.g. BS7750 and ISO 14001) and more and
more organizations are adopting the voluntary verification system Eco-Management and
Auditing Scheme (EMAS).
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2.2 What is a Social Audit?

Social auditing is a method of participatory impact assessment that can be used by (local)
government, businesses and organizations in almost any sector, including finance, housing,
agriculture and development cooperation. Social audit is a process that enables an
organisation to assess and demonstrate its social, economic, and environmental benefits and
limitations. Characterizing an audit, as "social" does not mean that costs and finance are not
examined - the central concern of a social audit is how resources are used for social
objectives, including how resources can be better mobilised to meet those objectives
(www.ciet.org/2003). A thoroughly competent and honest financial audit may reveal very little
about the results of the programme being audited. Only reliable evidence that links a
programme's impact and coverage to its costs can serve the needs of managers who seek to
manage on the basis of results. Nor can social accountability be achieved by looking only at
internal records of performance, however well and honestly these are kept. A social audit must
include the experience of the people the organization is intended to serve.

Social Audit is a systematic, regular and objective accounting procedure that enables
organisations to establish social values and criteria against which they can measure external
and internal performance and their social plans. The Social Audit methodology provides a
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framework in which organisations can establish their own priorities, strategic plans and
performance measurement criteria, and then monitor and make decisions about how to
maintain or improve their operations. Organisations, which undertake Social Audit, should view
the process as one by which they can learn more about their own organisation and manage
change, if required. This clearly distinguishes the Social Audit from other types of
measurement evaluations and surveys.
Social Audit aims to build a new definition of viability around a broader set of values that
represent the growing concern for wider responsibility in organisations. Finance accounting is
an essential part of management, but it does not include areas of responsibility that many
community organisations have to consider as part of their normal operations; the costs and
benefits associated with the activities of an organisation are much broader than those
described in financial terms. The profit and loss account only tells half the story; Social Audit
tells the other half.
The Social Audit methodology comprises four elements; these are:
1. The Statement of Purpose and Planning,
2. The External View,
3. The Internal View and
4. The Monitoring and Evaluating.
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Each of the four elements is made up of number of practical exercises. The Social Audit is
built up by undertaking the practical exercises and then bringing together the results, within
the four elements, into measurable performance areas. It is not necessary to use all the
exercises and where organisations already practice similar processes they are encouraged to
stick with them rather than change to the Social Audit exercises. The sequence is the essential
process; the exercises are there to provide the methodology in order to execute the process.
Each of the four elements and the exercises are linked and together provide an integrated
Social Audit methodology that further links to the Project Cycle Management (PCM)
methodology within the overall Community Enterprise structure.
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It is vital that the process is participative and inclusive. Social Audit must involve those
stakeholders closely associated with the organisation. Involvement means actively
participating in the design and realisation of the Social Audit processes; including the views of
all the stakeholders; and reporting the results of the audit to all stakeholders. A Social Audit is
usually undertaken by an Audit Team from within the organisation, working to a Terms of
Reference. The Audit Team is composed of representatives from different stakeholder groups:
this includes users of the services/facilities, members, management board members,
volunteers, funders and paid staff. An independent observer might also be seconded onto the
Audit Team.

The four main components of a Social Audit are:


1. Statement of Purpose – engaging the community in setting priorities: long term vision –
medium term strategy – short term operational criteria
2. External View - stakeholder and service assessment: benefits received – problems
identified – solutions designed, planned and implemented
3. Internal View – organisational assessment: effectiveness of operational methodology –
efficiency of management systems – satisfaction of board members, staff and volunteers
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4. Review and Planning – the learning loop: learning lessons from the previous years
planned and actual results, making changes and planning the next years strategy and
criteria

The Social Audit cycle starts with the Statement of Purpose and Planning, this reviews the
results of last year's purpose and plans and establishes this year's purpose and plans.
The External View engages a wide range of stakeholders and forms a view of the
organisation's position within the wider context.
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The Internal View engages with the board of directors, staff and volunteers in assessing
and designing satisfactory ways of working and reward, and makes sure the organisation
management and systems are able to achieve the purpose and plans.
The Monitoring and Evaluation element is where the Social Audit Team manages the Social
Audit and measures performance.
For each stage a number of practical exercises have been designed to fit within the overall
methodology of Social Audit. The progressive accumulation of understanding that can be
gained from measuring and managing social performance enables organisations to manage
effectively.
Social Auditing enables organizations to understand, measure, report and
improve on their social performance. The method brings together stakeholder views
and existing systems of social information about the organization in a manner that
enhances understanding and decision-making. It helps organizations to understand
their relationships with the stakeholders and to report openly to them.

Financial Auditing occurs in most organisations as an official and measured statement,


which reports on how effectively the group is managing their budgets. "Social Auditing" is
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similar, but focuses on monitoring the work the community organisation aims to achieve with
its clients or users. Participatory Audit is different from Social Audit in that it refers to audit
processes where stakeholders are directly or indirectly involved through a variety of audit and
monitoring methods and public hearings.

Social audit is similar, in some respects, to financial audit but focuses on social rather than
financial performance. According to Geddes, an early author on social audit,

“Social audit then is best understood as a reaction against conventional accounting


principles and practices,” which focus “on the financial viability and profitability of the
individual economic enterprise. By contrast, social audit proposes a broader financial
and economic perspective, reaching far beyond the individual enterprise. Social audit
posits other goals as well as, or instead of, financial profitability. Moreover social audit
attempts to embrace not only economic and monetary variables but also as its name
suggests social ones, including some which may not be amenable to quantification in
monetary terms.”
M. Geddes 1992, “The Social Audit Movement”, in Green reporting: the challenge of the nineties,
Owen D (Ed), Chapman and Hall and quoted in CBS Report
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Social audit consists of a distinct sequence of procedures or tasks that begins with clear
identification of the organization’s social responsibilities, establishment of performance
standards, application of measurement tools to assess the consequence of corporate decisions
and actions, and reporting on the organization’s performance over a specified period.10
George Clark, “Social Auditing – Feedback Control for Organizations”, p. 2. (An internet-generated
article.)

Social Audit is a systematic and objective procedure, which enables an organization to fully
engage its members in identifying needs solutions, plan activities, monitor progress and
measure its social performance in a comprehensive and participative way (Singh, 2003). The
underlying ideas are directly linked to concerns of democracy and participation. Its
application at the village level holds tremendous potential for contributing to good local
governance and increased transparency and accountability in rural development in India.

By social audit we mean a view of the administrative system from the perspective of the
vast majority of the people in the society in whose name and for whose cause the very
institutional/ administrative system is promoted and legitimized. Social audit of administration
means understanding the administrative system and its internal dynamics from the angle of
what they mean for the vast majority of the ordinary people (common man), that is those who
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are not essentially a part of the state or its machinery or the ruling class of the day (Mathew,
1999).

Sensitizing the target groups about benefits of any programme and identifying gaps in the
implementation of the programmes; scrutiny of the implication of technological choice for
people; scrutiny of the organizational structure and policy evolution for the people keeping in
view, their interests, priorities and perceptions; and making the system open and accountable
to the people, are necessary to make social audit effective.

Social auditing is distinct from evaluation in that it is an internally generated process


whereby the organization itself shapes the social audit process according to its stated
objectives. In particular it aims to involve all stakeholders in the process. It measures social
performance in order to achieve improvement as well as to report accurately on what has
been done. Social audit is an independent evaluation of the performance of an organization as
it relates to the attainment of its social obligation. It means it is an instrument of social
accountability of an organization. In other words, social audit may be defined as an in-depth
scrutiny and analysis of working of any public utility vis-à-vis its social relevance.
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Social audit is a process by which organizations can account for, report on, and improve
their social performance. It indicates, and where possible quantifies, the social impact and
ethical behaviour of an organization in relation to its aims and those of its stakeholders. It is a
process that enables organizations to systematically assess and demonstrate their
performance in relation to key objectives and factors not covered by financial auditing.

Social auditing process enables an organisation (or business) to assess and demonstrate
its social, community and/or environmental benefits and limitations. The emphases generally
are on the organisation rather than projects or programmes within it, and the desire to
establish a systematic and accountable approach which recognises all stakeholders (NICDA,
1997). When well embedded into an organisation, a social audit can provide an annual
overview about how well an organisation has addressed its objectives and core values, as well
as its effectiveness, efficiency and equity. Thus it is more than an assessment of the
mechanics of an organisation.

One form of social auditing is "citizen monitoring", which is used to monitor the quality of
local governance or service provision, in order either to "stamp" out corruption or promote
effective governance directly by improving citizen access to essential goods and services. The
things monitored are, first, whose priorities are reflected in the supply of services or local
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government performance, and secondly, the fulfillment of commitments made and


performance standards underwritten by the government or provider.

2.3 The Social Audit Field:

Social audit is the generic term referring to the full range of activities of the entire
procedure. In effect, it encompasses the following activities:

1. Social accounting, which covers:

a.Social bookkeeping, an activity whereby all information related to social performance


based on the organization’s social objectives are collected, recorded and systematically
classified;
b. Summarization and interpretation of the data; and
c.Reporting the information to management.

2. Social auditing, which covers:


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a.Verification of the information, and certification as to the correctness of the information;


and
b. Reporting the information to all the stakeholders and the public.

The audit process can be broken down into a number of different stages:
• Social book-keeping – defined as the ongoing process by which information is routinely
collected about the organisation’s performance in relation to social objectives.
• Social accounting – the year-end process of analyzing and interpreting the information
which has been collected in order to produce an account of social impact and performance.
• Social auditing – the process of reviewing and verifying the social accounts at the end of
each social audit period.

However, social audit is often the generic term used for the whole accounting
process, covering collection, analysis and verification.

Social Audit is a tool with which government departments can plan, manage and measure
non-financial activities and monitor both internal and external consequences of the
department/organisation’s social and commercial operations. It is an instrument of social
accountability for an organisation. In other words, Social Audit may be defined as an in-depth
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scrutiny and analysis of the working of any public utility vis-à-vis its social relevance. Social
Audit gained significance especially after the 73rd Amendment of the Constitution relating to
Panchayat Raj Institutions (Kurien-http://www.sasanet.org/documents/Tools/Social
%20Audit.pdf ).

2.4 Social Audit Definitions

Social audit is defined differently by different organizations. Some important definitions of


social audit are given below.
a) "Social Audit is a method for organisations to plan, manage and measure non-
financial activities and to monitor both the internal and external consequences of
the organisation's social and commercial operations." SEP
b) "Social Auditing is a process which enables organisations and agencies to assess
and demonstrate their social, community and environmental benefits and
limitations. It is a way to measure the extent to which an organisation lives up to
the shared values and objectives it has committed itself to promote." NICDA
c) "Social auditing is the process whereby an organisation can account for its social
performance, report on and improve that performance. It assesses the social
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impact and ethical behaviour of an organisation in relation to its aims and those
of its stakeholders." NEF
Source: http://www.mpen.org.uk/briefing/briefing8a.html
d) Social Auditing enables organizations to understand, measure, report and
improve on their social performance. The method brings together stakeholder
views and existing systems of social information about the organization in a
manner that enhances understanding and decision-making. It helps organizations
to understand their relationships with the stakeholders and to report openly to
them.

e)Social Audit refers to a process that enables an organization to assess and


demonstrate its social, economic, and environmental benefits and limitations. It
is a way of measuring the extent to which an organization lives up to the shared
values and objectives it has committed itself to.
Source: Community Land Unit Action framework, Graham Boyd and Alana Albee, 2001
78

In a training workshop on social audit organized by the Development alternatives at


Orchha (Madhya Pradesh) on 23-25 January 2006, the participants evolved the following
definitions of social audit.

f) Social Audit is a democratic process to ensure public accountability.

g) Through Social Audit, an organization can understand and evaluate its influence
on the community and be accountable to its stakeholders.

h) Social Audit is a technique by which the stakeholders can understand, measure,


testify, report and improve upon the social dimensions of an organization or
work.

i) Just as financial audit reflects the economic and financial well-being of an


organization, so does Social Audit reflect an organization’s social well-being in
terms of the people who are directly affected by its works.

Social audits are designed to track public expenditure and at the same time to invest in
the development of social capital and 'voice' for public planning and monitoring. In this way
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they create an impact upon governance by shaping the way in which decisions are made,
resources allocated and actions taken in particular settings. Social auditing is especially taken
up for the purpose of enhancing local governance, particularly for strengthening accountability
and transparency in local bodies. It is based on the principle that democratic local governance
should be carried out, as far as possible, with the consent and understanding of all concerned.
It is thus a process and not an event. It is a cyclical process that sets targets and
benchmarks that become embedded in the planning process. According to Singh (2007), a
social audit is a process by which the people, the final beneficiaries of any scheme,
programme, policy or law, are empowered to audit such schemes, programmes, policies and
laws. Singh further elaborates that a social audit is an ongoing process by which the potential
beneficiaries and other stakeholders of an activity or project are involved from the planning to
the monitoring and evaluation of that activity or project. It thereby tries to ensure that the
activity or project is designed and implemented in a manner that is most suited for the
prevailing (local) conditions, appropriately reflects the priorities and preferences of those
affected by it, and most effectively serves public interest.
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2.5 Purpose of the Social Audit

This tool is designed to be a handy, easy to use reference that not only answers basic
questions about Social Audit, reasons for conducting Social Audit, and most importantly gives
easy-to-follow steps for all those interested in using Social Audit. The purpose of conducting
Social Audit is not to find fault with the individual functionaries but to assess the performance
in terms of social, environmental and community goals of the organisation. It is a way of
measuring the extent to which an organisation lives up to the shared values and objectives it
has committed itself to. It provides an assessment of the impact of an organisation's non-
financial objectives through systematic and regular monitoring, based on the views of its
stakeholders (Kurien-http://www.sasanet.org/documents/Tools/Social%20Audit.pdf ).

The Social Audit process is intended as a means for social engagement, transparency and
communication of information, leading to greater accountability of decision-makers,
representatives, managers and officials. The underlying ideas are directly linked to concepts of
democracy and participation. The application of Social Audit at the village level holds
81

tremendous potential for contributing to good local governance and increased transparency
and accountability of the local bodies.
Social accounting establishes a framework for ongoing monitoring, evaluation and
accountability to stakeholders both internal and external to the organisation. The process of
social accounting can help an organisation to investigate its performance against social,
environmental and economic objectives, and ensure that it is working in accordance with its
values. In the private sector, social accounting is aligned with corporate social
responsibility.
2.6 Objectives of Social Audit

The following are the main objectives of Social Audit:


• Assessing the physical and financial gaps between needs and resources.
• Creating awareness among beneficiaries and providers of the benefits.
• Increase efficacy and effectiveness of the programmes/schemes.
• Scrutiny of various policy prescriptions keeping in view people’s interests, priorities and
perceptions.
• Estimation of the opportunity cost borne by the people not getting timely access to public
utilities.
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It is thus a people-oriented approach far different from traditional expenditure approach.


For achieving these objectives, the government has to open and be accountable to the people
and control over information has to be lifted, as access to information is the key to social
audit.

2.7 What is the scope of a Social Audit?

Social audits are conducted not only on schemes and programmes but also on policies and
laws and, indeed, on the functioning of a public agency. The task of auditing is relevant right
from the stage when an issue or an approach is identified, through planning, implementation,
monitoring and evaluation, and audits are done not just of the decisions taken or the actions
done (or not done), but also of the processes followed.

2.9 Relevance of Social Audit

Public utilities are an indispensable part of human life. Although investment in these
utilities has been increasing, their demand has always been more than supply due to pressure
of population. These public utilities have largely been neglected in rural sector due to scarcity
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of funds with the Panchayats and insult to injury has been added due to their
mismanagement. Since a large amount of money is invested in these utilities, SA is a sine qua
non for attaining underlying objectives of these services.

Lack of these utilities is causing hardships to the common man. Villagers have been
compelled to travel miles to have access to such facilities. Villagers are forced to migrate to
urban areas. Social amenities are less than the bare minimum. People sacrifice a lot to get
these facilities. In other words, opportunity cost for availing of such facilities is very high,
which have to be evaluated. Hospitals breed infectious diseases. Non-supply of medicine in
time, supply of sub-standard medicines, inadequate arrangement of meeting emergency
cases, lack of ambulance facilities, etc. create enormous problems for the common man. But
such evaluations do not find place in financial audit.

2.10 What are the benefits of doing a Social Audit?

• It permits an organization to effectively monitor and steer performance; understanding the


relationship between social and commercial; understanding the cost and other implications
of achieving social, community, cultural and/or environmental impact; making choices about
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priorities and modifying practices in the light of results.

• It permits the stakeholders in the organization to affect its behaviour and to influence future
policy.

• It allows the organization to report on its achievements in a way that is based upon verified
evidence rather that unsubstantiated claims.

• It permits those who invest in or fund the organization, and all its stakeholders including the
wider community, to judge if the organization is achieving the social, cultural, community
and/or environmental added-value which it set out to achieve.

• Finally, all of the above enable the organization to improve its social performance year on
year, in way that is inclusive, participatory, transparent and measurable.

Potential benefits
• As social accounting examines the social, environmental and
85

economic performance and impact of an organisation, it can offer


an organisation a method for obtaining a holistic and regular
process of examining both how it is doing (performance) and what
its effects are on people, communities, and the environment
(impact).
• Customers, service users, or clients can be involved with the social
accounting process and thereby feed their perspectives into the
organisation’s planning and measurement process. These
individuals or groups can also request/ read social accounts to know
more about organisation.
• Social accounting can feed into strategic planning, as it offers an
organisation the ability to systematically review its strengths and
areas for improvement.
• Organisations have a great deal of flexibility within the framework.
They may go through the process in different ways, and report on
the process differently, tailoring it to fit their needs and
requirements. An organisation can choose to report on any
indicators that it sees fit, thereby making it possible to fit many
‘proving and improving’ tools within the framework, including
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quality systems or indicators of impact that are required by


purchasers, funders, or lenders.
87

• There is flexibility in the time scale for completing the process and
in building up to a comprehensive set of accounts. The full process
can be done in stages over two or more years if the organisation
focuses on different aspects of its activities or objectives in each
year. This is only recommended if the whole picture will be
complete within a reasonable timeframe.
• The external validation process can be an important reality check
on the information the organisation has gathered.
• Having a verified and comprehensive statement of the
organisation’s impact and performance can help in reporting to
funders/investors, reporting to stakeholders and in compiling annual
reports.

Potential limitations

• Social accounting can be quite labour intensive, especially the first


time. If the organisation has not done basic strategic planning in
some time, it can be difficult to progress through the process rapidly.
88

• Although engaging in a social accounting process can be seen as a


commitment to improvement, social accounting is not explicitly
recognised by funders and lenders.
• The social accounting process is not particularly useful for
benchmarking, as the questions asked and methods for finding the
answers are left to each individual organisation to decide. However,
there are some organisations that are investigating reporting to a
common framework (e.g. CTAC in Manchester).

2.11 How does Social Audit work?

One can view Social Audit at two levels. One is at the organisation level (government,
private and NGOs) and another at the civil society level (private, NGO, CBO, universities,
schools, consumer organisations, SHGs, an individual etc.). At the organisational level, it is
internal as well as external. The internal component corresponds to social accounting and
social bookkeeping, whereas the external component involves verification of social account by
an independent Social Auditor or an audit panel.
89

Community/societal level audit is carried out to gather data on community values, social
benefits, social capital and quality of department/programme interface with people. This is
matched with outcomes of Social Audit carried out at the organisation/department level.
Based on the analysis, the programme or its activities are oriented towards
community/society’s expectations. Social Audit at community level also contributes to the
empowerment of civil society, equity, networking and advocacy.
Social Audit consists of book-keeping and discussion with stakeholders and community in
their settings. Methods include social accounting, stakeholder consultation, interviewing of
staff, NGO functionaries, beneficiaries, or anyone directly or indirectly affected by the
programmes and department activities. All these are simple-to-use tools and any department
should be able to undertake Social Audit by going through this toolkit.

The objectives of the organisation are the starting point from where the indicators of
impact are determined, the stakeholders are identified and the tools for data collection are
designed in detail. Social book-keeping records, stakeholder consultation, as well as, data from
the community are collected and maintained by the organisation or the department
concerned. Ideally, a panel of eminent citizens of unimpeachable integrity and social
commitment should review this social book-keeping annually. This aspect of Social Audit
sometimes includes an independent audit through an intensive interface with a variety of
90

stakeholders and the community. The Social Audit report can be placed in the public domain
for wider dissemination. These reports could be further used by a variety of stakeholders,
including policy makers, to bring about appropriate changes, if required, to maximise social
benefits.

2.12 Social Audit Principles

In the past years, there have been substantial efforts to define common themes in social
audit. From the experience of all those involved, a good social audit carries all these
characteristics:
1. Improved social performance. This is the overarching principle, and this refers to the
continuous improvement in performance by the organization relative to the chosen social
objectives as the result of social audit;
2. Multi-perspective. It is important for all groups affected or who affect the organization to
be included in the process;
3. Comparative. The process should allow for comparison with other organizations, over
time and between stakeholder groups.
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4. Comprehensive. The process should be designed to collect all relevant materials and
areas of concern should not be left out simply because the organization would not like the
result.
5. Regular. To facilitate comparability and to demonstrate a commitment to the process, it
should be regular, with a frequency of once every two years.
6. Verified. Verification by independent auditors gives the process credibility.
7. Published. The result (or a synopsis) of the audit should be published so that the
stakeholders can see the results and to encourage openness.
8. Improvement. It is important to receive feedback about the process itself and the report,
and to improve the system over time.
9. Embeddedness. The social audit process should be integrated with other business
information. gathering systems.
Euro Coop General Assembly, Op. cit., May 1999, pp. 4-5. (Note: Principles 1 to 7 are common to all
social audit models.)

It has to be recognized that not all organizations, especially from the community sector,
have the resources necessary to carry out and be able to fulfill all these principles in a given
year. Social audit can be done incrementally: one way is by foregoing verification and
disclosure during the first year; and another way is by reducing the comprehensiveness of the
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social audit framework by limiting it to few areas of decisions and actions. In this way the
organization moves slowly within the limits of its own resources, while inching towards the
completion of the full requirements of a social audit in all its eight principles and address in full
the first principle which is continuous improvement in the social performance of the
organization (John Pearce, Peter Reynard and Simon Zadek, Social Auditing for Small Organizations, NEF,
London, p.4.)

The process of social auditing encourages and helps an organization to continuously


monitor and improve its social performance. Six key principles underpin good practice:

• Multi-perspective: the social audit should reflect the views of all those involved with or
affected by the organization (the "stakeholders")
• Comprehensive: the social audit should aim ultimately to embrace all aspects of an
organizations' social, environmental, cultural and community benefit performance
• Comparative: the social audit should offer a means whereby the organization can compare
its own performance over time, make comparisons with other organizations engaged in
similar work and relate performance to appropriate benchmarks.
• Regular: the social audit should take place regularly and not just be an occasional or one-
off exercise.
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• Verification: the social accounts should be verified (audited) annually by one or more
person who has no vested interest in the results.
• Disclosure: the findings of the social audit should be made available to all those people
involved in the organization and to the wider community
• Improved social performance: The main message of social auditing, for any organization
(big or small), is the principle of improving social performance.

According to Singh (2007), The basic principles of social audit include:

• Complete transparency in the process of administration and decision-making, with an


obligation on the government to suo moto give the people full access to all relevant
information.
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• A right based entitlement for all the affected persons (and not just their representatives) to
participate in the process of decision making and validation;
• In those rare cases where options are pre-determined out of necessity, the right of the
affected persons to give informed consent, as a group or as individuals, as appropriate.
• Immediate and public answerability of elected representatives and government
functionaries, to all the concerned and affected people, on relevant actions or inactions.

2.13 How is it related to other types of audits?

Broadly speaking, there are at least three types of audits. There are

a.Government or institutional audits,


b. Social audits, and
c.People’s audits.

Government or institutional audits are those that are conducted in-house or through
external, professional, auditing institutions, and are ordinarily conducted without the
significant involvement of the affected people and/or the intended beneficiaries.
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Social audits are those that are conducted jointly by the government and the people,
especially by those people who are affected by, or are the intended beneficiaries of, the
activity being audited.

People’s audits are those that are conducted by the people themselves, including those who
are directly affected or are the intended beneficiaries, sometimes with the assistance of
movements and NGOs, but invariably with the sincere effort to involve the concerned
department or institution.

Development Audit: Development Audit is a tool by which an organization can increase


accountability and transparency through stakeholder engagement. The approach recognizes
both strong and weak stakeholders and aims in particular to give weaker stakeholders a voice
in decisions that have previously been the sole responsibility of managers, officials or
representatives. In methods and approach, a Development Audit is very similar to a Social
Audit – a tool designed to assess the social performance of businesses. Development Audit
adds to Social Audit an assessment of costs involved in a program. This reflects a concern that
an efficient
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and sustainable approach to financial resource allocation is as critical for development as


other objectives that are social, institutional and environmental, and needs also to be part of a
transparent process of assessment and planning.

The methodology envisages a regular cycle of auditing, comprising a series of steps. These
include a scoping study, review of records, stakeholder consultation on issues, indicators and
appropriate targets, measurement of indicators selected, analysis of program costs and
results, and presentation back to stakeholders on the findings.

2.14 How is a social audit different to other types of audits?

Social Audit is often misinterpreted as another form of audit to determine the accuracy of
financial or statistical statements or reports and the fairness of the facts they present. A
conventional financial audit focuses on financial records and their scrutiny by an external
auditor following financial accountancy principles, whereas the concept of Social Audit is more
comprehensive, having a greater scope than that of traditional audit. In general, Social Audit
refers to a process for measuring, understanding and improving the social performance of an
activity of an organisation. Social Auditing is again distinct from evaluation in that it is an
internally generated process whereby the organisation itself shapes the Social Audit process
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according to its stated objectives. In particular, it aims to involve all stakeholders in the
process. It measures social performance in order to achieve improvement as well as to report
accurately on what has been done. Financial audit is geared towards verification of reliability
and integrity of financial information. Similarly, operation audit looks at compliance with
policies, plan procedures, laws, regulations, established objectives and efficient use of
resources. On the contrary, Social Audit examines performance of a department/programme
vis-à-vis its stated core values in the light of community values and the distribution of benefits
among different social groups reached through good governance principles. Social Audit adds
another dimension of key performance measurements in creating social wealth in the form of
useful networks and administration/ accountable and transparent to the stakeholders. Creating
social wealth is one of the key contributions of Social Audit. Thus, Social Audit strengthens the
legitimacy of the state, as well as trust between the state and the civil society.

Social Audit is proposed as a supplement to conventional audit to help Government


departments/ public agencies to understand and improve their performance as perceived by
the stakeholders. Social Audit is to be done at different levels of the government and the civil
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society. Social Audit is an ongoing process, often done in 12-month cycles that result in the
preparation of annual Social Audit document or report of an organisation.

Financial Audit Operational Social Audit


Audit
Directed towards Establishing Social Audit provides
recording, standards of an assessment of the
processing, operation, impact of a
summarizing and measuring department’s non-
reporting of performance financial objectives
financial data. against standards, through systematic
examining and and regular monitoring
analyzing on the basis of the
deviations, taking views of its
corrective actions stakeholders.
and reappraising
standards based
on experience are
the main focus.
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As government or institutional audits do not significantly involve the affected persons,


or the intended beneficiaries, they end up at best assessing outputs rather than outcomes and
are also not able to assess whether the decision making processes had the inputs and support
of all the critical stakeholders. Such systems are also very corruptible, as those involved in the
audit do not have a real stake in the outcome of the process that they are auditing.

Public audits do not have these problems, because they are usually conducted by the
affected persons and/or the intended beneficiaries. However, the bfindings of a public audit
might not be easily acceptable to the government and other implementing institutions as they
are not intrinsically involved in the process of audit and, despite best efforts, might not
participate. Besides, without the participation of the implementing departments/institutions,
their side of the story does not get told.

On the other hand, social audits do not have a uniform approach and methodology and
many local factors affect their efficacy. To conduct social audits a huge amount of public
mobilisation is necessary and, in the absence of that, social audits might not be effective.
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2.15 What would be the ideal option?

Ideally, government or institutional audit would remain the basic auditing practice, but
would become far more transparent and inclusive of affected persons and intended
beneficiaries, incorporating and integrating some of the practices of social audits.

For a sample of activities, especially for those that involve distribution of disaggregated
benefits at grassroots level, or very large investments, social audits would be conducted in
addition to government or institutional audits. The findings of such social audits would be
publicly compared to those of the government or institutional audits and correctives identified
and incorporated in both. There would also be a public rendering of action taken.

Only where there was dissatisfaction among the public with one or both of these auditing
processes would the public take the initiative of conducting a public audit. When this
happens, the government or other implementing institutions would fully participate in the
public audit, thereby making it comprehensive, and take on board the findings. The concerned
institution would also come back to the public and report on the action taken on the findings.
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2.16 Social Audit - A tool for improvement: How

• Social audit is generated by the organization and those most directly involved in it, unlike
many evaluations which are imposed from outside on terms of reference determined by
whoever is commissioning the evaluation.

• The process and results therefore belong to the organization


• The organization and the stakeholders determine the social objectives and the indicators
used to assess performance
• Since all stakeholders are involved in the process, they will all contribute to the assessment
of performance and to how objectives and practice are modified year by year
• Social audit involves stakeholders not only in the assessment of the organization but also in
the ways forward in terms of issues raised in the assessment.

2.17 Risks Involved and Key Success Factors


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The key to successful Social Auditing is in knowing which techniques to use and in what
sequence. The Social Auditor can choose different methods so as to capture both quantitative
and qualitative information from the respondent. It is equally important to ensure the follow-
up action taken on the Social Audit report and the receptiveness of the
departments/organisations to adopt the recommendations in the Social Audit report. The
social auditors should suggest modalities for improving its performance based on the feedback
received from different stakeholders. The detailed work plan needs to be identified by the
social auditors and the same should be implemented at the earliest stakeholders (Kurien-
http://www.sasanet.org/documents/Tools/Social%20Audit.pdf ).

2.18 The Social Audit Evolution

Social audit is a work in progress; it is evolving. Continuous learning and improvements


are important. There is always a need, for instance, to improve both the conceptualization of
the areas of decisions and actions that are being audited, and the indicators and measures of
performance. And learning from others too, who do social audit, and from the wider literature
on the subject and related subjects is advisable. Sharing of experiences, developing some
common standards and sharing of measures and indicators may also help. For truly, what is
important is that the subsequent audit is always a better one.
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Social Audit is a comparatively new subject, particularly in the development sector in India.
Although the Government of India has recognized the importance of Social Audit and even
made it mandatory, there has been very little of it on ground, in practice. Indeed, the concept
of Social Audit is still at a nascent stage in the country. Its theory is still evolving, and its role
as an empowering tool is as yet little understood and hindered by practical and executive
problems. However, some encouraging experiences in the last few years, and now particularly
with the ‘Right to Information Law’ having got legislated, the civil society, specially those
working on rights based issues, are beginning to realize the increasing value of Social Audit as
a tool to empower the people and demand accountability in their development and related
works.

()()()()()

CHAPTER - III
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THE SOCIAL AUDIT FRAMEWORK


3.1 Defining the Scope and Focus:

A social audit begins by defining the scope and focus of the entire procedure. This is its
first and its most important consideration. The scope and focus includes the areas of decisions
and actions, the objectives of the whole exercise and the objectives of each area of concern,
the measurement methodologies and the names of the specific documents needed for the
study. The scope and focus limits the entire procedure for that one engagement being
undertaken, and is agreed upon by the organization and the auditor. It likewise provides an
approximation of the level of inquiry that is necessary in order to get the information needed
to understand and appreciate the cooperative’s social performance.

The scope and focus may incorporate all the areas of decisions and actions that are of
concern to the whole organization, or it may only cover few areas that the cooperative feels to
be of pressing need at the earliest time for deeper study. Certainly, that resolve is entirely that
of the organization, since taking such a comprehensive review tabs in on resources
particularly if it is just starting to undertake the social audit process. It is good, of course, to
look at how the organization performs in the most comprehensive way, but for practical
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reasons the social audit can be done piecemeal, as mentioned earlier in gradual and
incremental manner, limiting to few areas of decisions and actions at the start, and later
expanding to other decisions and actions, until the social audit can encompass the full range
of issues and stakeholder interests that fall within the organization’s operational sphere and
influence.

3.2 Social Accountability: Building Blocks

As described above, social accountability encompasses an extremely broad array of


actions that citizens can potentially take to hold government officials and bureaucrats
accountable. These actions may be carried out by a wide range of actors (e.g., individual
citizens, communities, parliamentarians, CSOs, media), occur at different levels (e.g., local to
national), address a variety of different issues (e.g., public policy, political conduct, public
expenditures, service delivery) and use diverse strategies (e.g., research, monitoring,
participatory planning, civic education, media coverage, coalition building). Despite this
diversity, social accountability approaches regularly feature processes of collective interest
articulation and negotiation. Beyond mere advocacy, they often also try to build a convincing
evidence-base for public engagement. They normally comprise several (and, ideally, all) of the
following key elements or ‘building blocks’.
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• Mobilizing around an entry point

The first step of almost any social accountability initiative is the identification of an entry
point and the development of a strategy whereby a priority problem can be addressed. The
problem may be of a specific or general nature and may be identified at a local, regional or
national level. For example, in the case of poor health service delivery, potential entry points
might include national health budget allocations, corruption/inefficiencies within the national
distribution system or the performance of local service providers or village health
management committees. Each of these could be a serious bottleneck to delivery of health
services. Potential strategies for addressing these issues could include, for example, budget
analysis/advocacy activities, tracking of health inputs and/or expenditures, participatory
evaluation of local health services, etc.

• Building an information/evidence base

Accessing or generating relevant information and building a credible evidence base that
will serve to hold public officials accountable is a critical aspect of social accountability. Social
accountability initiatives often involve obtaining: (i) “supply-side” data/information (from
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government and service providers) and (ii) “demand-side” data/information (from users of
government services, communities and citizens). In accessing “supply-side” information (e.g.,
policy statements, budget commitments and accounts, records of inputs, outputs and
expenditures, audit findings , etc.), the transparency of government and its capacity to
produce and provide data and accounts are crucial.22 With regard to “demand-side”
information, a wide variety of participatory methods and tools (e.g., community scorecards,
citizen report cards, participatory monitoring and evaluation techniques) have been developed
to generate data, while simultaneously serving to raise awareness and promote local-level
mobilization and organization.

Relevant data/information, once obtained, must be interpreted and analyzed in order to be


rendered operationally useful. This may involve working with trained specialists (e.g., who can
help to “demystify” budgets or disaggregate financial accounts) or using participatory
methods to help community members or user groups analyze local data or collectively
evaluate public services. In either case, the goal of the analysis is to produce meaningful
findings that can be understood by all stakeholders and used to move beyond mere protest to
evidence-based dialogue.
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• Going public

Bringing information and findings into the public sphere and generating public debate
around them are a key element of most social accountability initiatives. Be it budget details,
the findings of public expenditure reviews, audits or project evaluation results, this information
takes on new significance and impact when made accessible to the public at large, serving
both to inform and to create an impetus for action. Effective communication strategies and
mechanisms are, therefore, essential aspects of social accountability. These may include the
organization of public meetings and events as well the strategic use of both modern and
traditional forms of media. Transmitting relevant information to government officials who are
in a position to act on it (and, ideally, interacting directly with those decision-makers on an on-
going basis) is also an essential aspect of social accountability.

• Rallying support and building coalitions

Informing citizens of their rights and responsibilities, engaging their interest and mobilizing
them to build coalitions and partnerships with different stakeholders (like bureaucrats, media,
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parliamentarians, etc.) is a core aspect of social accountability. Ideally, every step of a social
accountability initiative contributes to informing/engaging citizens and mobilizing support. The
ability of citizens to organize for collective action and the capacity of CSOs to facilitate and
support such mobilization are crucial to the success of social accountability initiatives. Again,
reaching out to poor and marginalized segments of the population requires specific effort and
remains a principal challenge.

• Advocating and negotiating change

The most crucial and challenging element of a social accountability strategy is to be able
to elicit a response from public officials and effect real change. The most effective strategies
usually involve direct interaction and negotiation with the concerned government counterparts
and, in some cases, the institutionalization of mechanisms for ongoing consultation and
dialogue. As discussed above, in negotiating change, citizens’ groups employ a range of both
informal and formal means of persuasion, pressure, reward and sanction. These include, for
example, creating public pressure (e.g., through media campaigns and public meetings) or
when necessary, resorting to formal means of enforcement (e.g., through legal and judicial
processes). The space and opportunity for negotiation as well as the possibility of appeal to
formal means of sanction obviously vary greatly from one country context to another. In many
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developing country contexts, citizen’s groups have found that legal and/or institutional
reforms are necessary to facilitate meaningful negotiation.

3.3 Social Accountability: Critical Factors of Success

The evolution of most social accountability initiatives has been far from systematic. For the
most part, measures by citizen groups to promote accountability have been opportunistic
responses to particular situations. Their success has therefore also been heavily dependent on
several factors. Some of these are discussed below.

• Political context and culture

The parameters for social accountability are largely determined by the existing political
context and culture. For example, the feasibility and likelihood of success of social
accountability initiatives are highly dependent upon whether the political regime is
democratic, a multi-party system is in place, basic political and civil rights are guaranteed
(including access to information and freedoms of expression, association and assembly) and
whether there is a culture of political transparency and probity. The existence of these
underlying factors, and the potential risks that their absence may pose, must be taken into
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account when planning social accountability initiatives. Legal, institutional and socio-cultural
factors will also have an important influence on the success of social accountability activities.
An unfavorable context does not mean that social accountability activities should not be
pursued. In such circumstances, however, an analysis of the key factors influencing the
environment for social accountability (and the risks they entail) must be undertaken and
appropriate strategies for addressing potential barriers developed.

• Access to information

As described above the availability and reliability of public documents and data is essential
to building social accountability. Such information is the basis for social accountability
activities, and thus its quality and accessibility28 is a key determinant of the success of social
accountability mechanisms. In many cases, initial social accountability efforts may need to
focus on securing freedom of information legislation, addressing a lack of political will to
disclose or strengthen the technical capacity of public institutions to record, manage and
make available relevant data.

• The role of the media


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The media plays a critical role in promoting social accountability. In many countries,
independent media is a leading force in informing/educating citizens, monitoring government
performance and exposing misdeeds. Local-level media (in particular, private and community
radio) provide an important means whereby ordinary citizens can voice their opinions and
discuss public issues. The extent to which media is independent and ownership is pluralistic
(versus concentrated in a few hands) are important factors that can contribute to the
accountability of the political system. A common element of almost all successful social
accountability initiatives is the strategic use of both traditional and modern forms of media to
raise awareness around public issues, disseminate findings and create a platform for public
debate.

• Civil society capacity

The capacity of civil society actors is another key factor of successful social accountability.
The level of organization of CSOs, the breadth of their membership, their technical and
advocacy skills, their capacity to mobilize and effectively use media, their legitimacy and
representativity and their level of responsiveness and accountability to their own members are
all central to the success of social accountability activities. In many contexts, efforts to
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promote an enabling environment for civil society and to build the capacity (both
organizational and technical) of CSOs are required.

• State capacity

The success of social accountability initiatives also depends upon the capacity and
effectiveness of the state. Social accountability initiatives make little sense, for example,
where the state machinery has collapsed or is entirely ineffectual. A functioning public
administration that has some capacity to respond
to citizen demands is, therefore, a prerequisite. Other aspects of state capacity that influence
the success of social accountability initiatives (and that may require capacity development
investments) include: the ability to produce records and accounts; the existence of
conventional (“horizontal”) accountability mechanisms; the effective devolution of authority
and resources; the willingness and capacity to build partnerships/coalitions; and, a political or
administrative culture that values notions of public sector probity, accountability and equity.

• State-civil society synergy


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Ultimately, the success of social accountability initiatives depends on some form of


effective interaction between civil society and the state. Meaningful results are most likely to
be achieved when citizens, politicians and bureaucrats all have an incentive to act. Ackerman
(2004) points out that “unilateral state action normally ends up in manipulation, while
unilateral social action often ends in repression and violence by the state” and that “the most
productive results arise when both sides actively participate”. He clarifies that such mutual
participation does not necessarily depend upon agreement, or trust and that even “conflict
and suspicion” can lead to effective state-society synergies. The lesson is that social
accountability initiatives must include both state and societal actors and focus on the interface
between them (Ackerman, 2004, p.7).

• Institutionalization

While ad hoc or one-off social accountability initiatives can make a difference, experience
shows that impact is greatest and most sustainable when social accountability mechanisms
are “institutionalized” – in other words, embedded within and systematically implemented by a
civil society, state or “hybrid” institution. As discussed earlier, “external” mechanisms of social
accountability can be particularly effective when combined with accountability mechanisms
“internal” to the state. According to Fox (2000, p. 1), “civil society demands for state
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accountability matter most when they empower the state’s own checks and balances.” As a
result, beyond seeking specific operational outcomes, social accountability initiatives should
also pay attention to institutional factors and seek opportunities for influencing longer-term
institutional development and/or reform. Social accountability initiatives often identify the
need for institutional changes in government agencies and public services (e.g., changes in
the behavior and attitudes of frontline staff, of the incentives and sanctions of a partic ular
organization, its management style or decision making processes, etc.). They can go further
and also play a catalytic role in bringing these changes about (e.g., by engaging with staff of
health centers to regularly seek and embrace client feedback systems, setting up citizen
transparency committees for local government decision-making or introducing social
monitoring groups to evaluate performance of national programs or policies on an ongoing
basis). Where possible, the legal institutionalization of participatory mechanisms from the level
of individual programs and agencies through to the overall system level should be considered
as a means to enhance long-term effectiveness and sustainability.

3.4 Designing Social Audit

3.4..1. First decide on why you are doing it:


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The toolkit can be used to create a research design that suits the particular needs of a
community. With the suggested measures given in the toolkit, the Social Auditor(s) will be in a
position to conduct a more in-depth analysis as to how the new welfare policies/programmes
are affecting the lives and livelihoods of the target groups. The Social Audit introduces new
ways of researching communities and comes out with richer and wider information than
conventional forms of research.

3.4..2. Ask what you want to achieve from the audit:

The tools suggested in the toolkit can be used by the Social Auditor(s) to find areas of real
concern in the community and for looking at the connections and relationships which create or
undermine social capital.

3.4..3. For whom is the report being made?


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The Social Audit report is intended for government departments, community activists and
other stakeholders who want to analyse the 'real' benefits of government programmes and to
use the same for lobbying and other forms of social action. The users of toolkit can go through
the entire framework and use the tools that suit their purpose.

3.5 Designing the Data Collection

The data collection should align with the time, resources and the needs of the community.
If the data collectors haven't done any data collection exercise earlier they will need some
exposure to the methods of data collection. It is necessary that the data should reflect the
views of the respondents rather than the views of the researcher. Survey research is an
important method in identifying the real benefits delivered to the citizens. There are a number
of ways for conducting surveys and it is hard to compare the advantages and disadvantages
across different types of surveys. The key to a successful Social Audit is in knowing which
techniques to use and in what sequence. The Social Auditor can choose different methods so
as to capture both quantitative and qualitative information from the respondent.

The different methods of survey include:


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Questionnaire Method : The information collection can be done through Postal


survey: This method of survey is relatively less expensive and found to be more useful when
the same instrument can be sent to a wide cross section of people. However, it is generally
found that the response rate is low and this method will not help in getting qualitative
information for conducting Social Audit.

Group administered questionnaire: Under this method, a sample of respondents is


brought together and asked to respond to a structured sequence of questions. This method is
ideal for collecting information from the group of villagers who join for village meetings and it
is relatively easy to assemble the group in a village setting. This method offers a higher
response rate and if the respondents are unclear about the meaning of a question they could
ask for clarifications.

Household drop-off: In this approach, the Social Auditor goes to the respondent's house.
This method is expected to increase the percentage of respondents. However, the applicability
of this method is geographically limited, slow and expensive.
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Interview Method: The interviews can be conducted through

Personal interview: Interviews are a far more personal form of research than questionnaires
and is very useful in finding qualitative remarks. This method helps to learn more about the
situation in detail, to discuss issues that would be difficult to address in group situations and to
reveal their personal perspectives on a particular topic. Unlike mail surveys, the interviewer
has the opportunity to probe or ask follow-up questions. However, this method is very time
consuming and resource intensive.

Key informants: The information collection should be at random, covering people who can
represent a particular group or view point with special knowledge so as to gain insights into
particular subjects.

Group interview: This method of information collection allows a focused discussion on


particular issues concerning the community. This method requires less resources compared to
personal interviews.
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Telephonic interview: Telephone interviews enable the Social Auditor to gather information
rapidly. Like personal interviews, they help to develop some personal contact between the
interviewer and the respondent and this method offers the possibility of probing into details.
But some of the disadvantages of this method are, many people in villages don't have access
to telephones and most of the telephone numbers are not listed publicly.

Semi-structured Interviews

Semi-structured interviews are conducted with a fairly open framework, which allows for
focused, conversational, two-way communication. They can be used to both give and receive
information. Semistructured interviews conducted by experienced interviewers will help to
overcome the limits of the questionnaire technique by letting respondents answer and discuss
in ways which allow them freedom to raise other issues. The strategy of a semi-structured
interview is to prepare in advance a minimum number of questions, say 10 to 15. This small
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number should be enough to convey the focus of interviews, which allows for conversational
flexibility and enables interviewers to become familiar with the subject or problem. It is critical
that the interviewers are familiar with the interview guide, so that the interview can be
conducted in a conversational, informal way.

Semi-structured interviews are useful for comparative listening to perspectives of diverse


population and in providing the bulk of the findings. The team of interviewers must therefore
be prepared to add interviews in the event that unforeseen biases or perspectives become
apparent.

Semi-Structured Interviewing - Organising Tips

• The interview team should consist of two to four people of different disciplines
• Begin with traditional greeting and state that you are here to learn
• Begin questioning by referring to someone or something visible
• Conduct the interview informally
• Be open-minded and objective
• Let each team member finish his/her line of questioning (do not interrupt)
• Carefully lead up to sensitive questions
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• Assign one note-taker


• Pay attention to non-verbal cues
• Avoid leading questions that can be answered with ‘yes’ or ‘no’
• Individual interviews should be no longer than 45 minutes
• Group interviews should be no longer than two hours

Source: J. Theis and H. M Gardy, 1991, Participatory Rapid Appraisal for Community Development: A
training manual based on experiences in the Middle East and North Africa, Save the Children Federation
and the International Institute for Environment and Development, London.

Semi-structured Interview Guidelines

Not all questions are designed and phrased ahead of time. The majority of questions are
created during the interview, allowing both the interviewer and the person being interviewed
with the flexibility to probe for details or discuss issues based on the following :

1. Within structured questionnaire (limited use of some skills and rationale)


2. Free-standing interview, using open-ended format or questions as triggers, to get the
subject talking
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3. Guided fieldwork conversations.

a) Whom to interview? - Depends on purpose


b) Whole population? - Feasibility
c)Random sample or sub-sample? - Justify by randomness and representativeness
d) Theoretical sampling? - Deliberately skew towards certain social categories,
occupants of certain social positions, or individuals
e) Individuals or groups? - Relates to fieldwork conversations/stimulates or inhibits others
present

4. Relationship between researcher and researched:

a) Issues of power and control: who's in charge? - Greater vulnerability than with fixed
script
b) Structural issues of gender ethnicity, class, age, occupation
c) Pitfalls of interviewing those assumed to be more powerful, less powerful, similar
position
d) Standardisation, replicability, objectivity
e) Objectivity/Conformability
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In-depth Interviews

In-depth interviewing involves asking questions, listening to the answers, and then posing
additional questions to clarify or expand on a particular issue. To start with, the Social Auditor
should define the sample size and method which determines who will be interviewed, and the
number of interviews required to collect the required information. As the second stage is to
undertake in-depth interviews, the researcher should design an interview guide, which can be
used as a checklist so that the interviewers can be sure that they cover each topic thoroughly.

In-depth Interview - Organising Tips

• Identifying the goal(s) of the interview


• Designing an interview schedule of questions to be asked
• Piloting and revising the interview schedule
o Were the questions understood as intended?
o Were the planned follow-up questions useful?
o Are there additional follow-up questions that should be included?
o Was the sequence of questions appropriate for the purpose of the interview?
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• Analysing the results of the interviews


Source: In-Depth Interviews to Understand Student Understanding; M. Kathleen Heid; Pennsylvania State
University This interview guide needs to be pre-tested in a small number of interviews to revise or refine
it as needed.

In-depth discussion with the community members and other stakeholders on areas under
study will provide an understanding of the beneficiaries' view of a programme and their
judgement. A multi-pronged approach is needed for data collection and it should include a
mixture of techniques such as desk research, field data collection, personal interviews,
telephonic interviews, structured surveys and so on. A detailed guide to undertake citizens'
survey is given as Appendix V.

A Checklist for Designing an Audit

1. Survey of stakeholders: A survey of stakeholders should try to cover the attitudes and
behaviour and make sure that adequate number of different stakeholder groups are covered
to arrive at a reliable conclusion.
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2. Checking the media: Before setting out, the survey reports that have come out in the
media during the recent past pertaining to the area under study, need to be looked into
carefully.

3. Survey of attitudes and behaviour of stakeholders concerned: A survey of attitudes


and behaviour of an adequate number of stakeholder groups will be useful in gathering
significant and reliable results. Through this survey, different stakeholders are considered and
the surveyor can get a perspective of how they perceive various issues.

Group Exercise

Participatory Rural Appraisal (PRA) has contributed a series of methods which the local
people, including the illiterate, could use effectively to monitor and evaluate programmes. PRA
emphasises local knowledge and enables the local people to make their own appraisal,
analysis and plans. The participatory techniques such as resource mapping, mobility mapping,
social mapping etc, can also be used as possible tools for conducting Social Audit. These tools,
used at regular intervals, will enable the availability of time series data for evaluating the
benefits of the programme and this exercise facilitates information sharing, analysis and
action among stakeholders.
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Focus group interviews: Focus group research is a relatively unstructured form of data
collection where small groups of community members are identified to evaluate the benefits/
costs shared among different stakeholder groups.

Key people interviews: Officials and policy makers are to be contacted for capturing their
perception about the programme implementation and during interviews the Social Auditor
should keep a running record of all relevant material mentioned and he/she should collect
them at the end of the interview.

The survey must also collect basic statistical data on people who are being interviewed. The
Social Auditor, therefore, should collect information regarding age, sex, income, employment
details, education, full postal address and language spoken. This will help in comparing the
findings with similar groups elsewhere.

Traditional Social Indicators

Social indicators help to identify the standard of living by identifying components of


welfare and by constructing respective indicators. In the early stages of conducting Social
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Audit, it is always desirable to look at statistics and reports already available. Much of the
information can be collected from different official data sources, including university research
reports, reports in journals etc.

Social indicators give measurable changes in human population, communities and social
relationships. Through these social indicators, the Social Auditor will be able to gather figures,
statistics and findings, which could provide macro-perspectives needed for Social Audit.
Following is a list of social impact indicators developed by UNEP as a sample:

List of Social Impact Assessment Variables:

Population Characteristics

• Population change
• Ethnic and racial distribution
• Relocated populations
• Seasonal residents
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Community and Institutional Structures

• Voluntary associations
• Interest group activity
• Size and structure of local government
• Historical experience with change
• Employment/income characteristics
• Employment equity of minority groups
• Local/regional/national linkages
• Industrial/commercial diversity
• Presence of planning and zoning activity

Political and Social Resources

• Distribution of power and authority


• Identification of stakeholders
• Interested and affected public
• Leadership capability and characteristics
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Individual and Family Changes

• Perceptions of risk, health and safety


• Trust in political and social institutions
• Residential stability
• Attitudes toward policy/project
• Family and friendship networks
• Concerns about social well-being

Community Resources

• Change in community infrastructure


• Land use patterns/Effects on cultural, historical and archaeological resources

These variables are suggestive and illustrative and are only intended to provide a
beginning for the Social Auditor(s). Though the traditional social indicators provide the broad
perspective, these figures, findings and statistics alone are not enough to give a true picture
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of the issues concerning the people. In reality, the priorities of the community are often
different from those designed and implemented by the policy makers and professionals. One
of the major challenges of Social Audit is to enable the communities to express and
communicate their realities and priorities to the policy-makers. Social Auditing tries to link
micro and macro indicators and the Social Audit report attempts to influence policy-makers on
how changes at macro levels can adversely affect the lives of people at large.

The Follow-up Action Plan for Social Audit

The purpose behind conducting Social Audit is not to find fault with the individuals but to
assess the performance in terms of social, environmental and community goals of the
organisation. The audit findings need to be owned up and internalised by the respective
departments/organisations. To ensure the follow-up for Social Audit, the departments should
develop an action plan with respect to the recommendations outlined in the report.
Subsequently, the departments should set up a separate task force to ensure timely execution
of the action plan based on guidelines given in the Social Audit report.

The success of Social Auditing depends on the follow-up action taken on the Social Audit
report and the receptiveness of the departments/organisations to adopt the recommendations
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in the Social Audit report. The task force should suggest modalities for improving its
performance based on the feedback received from different stakeholders. The detailed work
plan needs to be identified by the task force and the same should be implemented at the
earliest.

()()()()()
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CHAPTER - IV

SOCIAL AUDIT TOOLKIT


4.1 Introduction
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The Social Audit Toolkit is developed to guide the government departments, community
organisations and civil society groups for using Social Audit as a practical tool to identify,
measure, assess and to report on their social performance. To undertake this audit, we need
to agree on how to proceed, how to collect data and what data is to be collected. We need to
standardise the methodologies for conducting Social Audit. The following sections of the toolkit
will describe the sequential process involved in conducting the Social Audit.

Social Audit Toolkit can be used by government departments, private enterprises as well
as the civil society. However, the scope in terms of audit boundaries would be specific to that
of a government department, private organisation, an NGO or a community. In case of private
organisations, the emphasis may be on balancing financial viability with its impact on the
community and environment. In case of NGOs, in addition to using them to maximise the
impact of their intervention programme, they could also be used as effective advocacy tools.
Depending on the resources available Social Audit could be comprehensive, state-wide, and
can also be localised to the community level.
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Social Audit being a flexible tool could be used by anyone. Depending on the resources
available Social Audit could be comprehensive, state-wide, and can also be localised to the
community level.

Government and Funding Agencies Government departments and agencies implementing


programmes

Private Enterprises Corporate and small business enterprises

Civil Society Formal: NGOs, Universities, Colleges,


Schools, and Consumer Forums……… Informal: CBOs, SHGs
4.2 Where do we start?

Social Audit is a flexible tool. It has six steps. Before taking the first step, it is important
that key decision-makers have considered various aspects of Social Audit and have arrived at
a consensus at various levels on undertaking Social Audit. The decision to undertake Social
Audit should be internal and well considered. This would ensure that there is ownership and
commitment. Willingness to be democratic, open and provide space for stakeholders would be
critical for going through all the stages of Social Auditing.
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It is important to note that all the six steps flow from or have to be visualised in the
backdrop of the social mission of the department/programme(s) that includes: mission, vision,
core values and core responsibilities. The organisation should identify Social Auditor(s) -
individual(s) and/or organisation(s). The characteristics/profile of the Social Auditor could be:

• Professionals with expertise in Social Audit; or


• Third party not having any direct or indirect stake in the organisation.

4.3 Six Key Steps for Social Audit

The social audit toolkit prepared by the Centre for Good Governance, Hyderabad, has
suggested the following six steps of Social Auditing:

1. Preparatory Activities

 Understand key principles of Social Audit.


 List core values of the department/ programmes.
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 List down social objectives the department is working towards or programmes it aims to
contribute.
 Match activities with objectives.
 List current practices and delivery systems.
 Fix the responsibility for doing Social Audit in the department.
 Budget for Social Audit.

2. Defining Audit Boundaries and Identifying Stakeholders

 Elaborate key issues for Social Auditing based on the social objectives.
 Prepare a statement of purpose, objectives, key issues and activities for Social Auditing.
 Identify key stakeholders for consultation (Government and Civil Society).
 Forge consensus on audit boundaries; identify stakeholders and formalise
commitments.

3. Social Accounting and Book-keeping


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 Select performance indicators for social accounting.


 Identify which existing records can be used.
 Identify what additional data to be collected, who would collect this data, when and how.
 Identify when stakeholders would be consulted and for what.
 Prepare a social accounting plan and timeline.
 Plan for monitoring social accounting activities.

4. Preparing and Using Social Accounts

 Prepare social accounts using existing information, data collected and views of
stakeholders.
 Identify key issues for action.

 Take stock of objectives, activities and core values.


 Set targets for future.

5. Social Audit and Dissemination


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 Presenting social accounts to Social Auditor.


 Social Auditor verifies data used, assess the interpretation and comment on the quality of
social accounting and reporting.
 Social accounts revised in accordance with Social Auditor’s recommendations.
 Social Auditor has to collect information from the stakeholders regarding
programme implementation and benefits accrued to them.
 Disseminate Social Auditor’s consolidated report to the decision-making
committee that includes stakeholders.
 Disseminate report to civil society.
 Begin next cycle of social accounting.

6. Feedback and Institutionalisation of Social Audit

 Feedback for fine-tuning policy, legislation, administrative functioning and programming


towards social objectives.
 Follow-up action.
 Reviewing support to civil society for its participation
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 Institutionalisation of the process.


 The first two steps are critical when a department decides to incorporate social
accounting, social book-keeping and Social Auditing. The department needs to look at its
vision, goals, current practices and activities to identify those that are amenable to Social
Auditing purposes.
 Form small work groups (say, seven persons), which would spend about two days each to
list down the social vision, core values, social objectives and map stakeholders and their
involvement. Ensure involvement of various functionaries, with due representation to
gender, while forming small groups.
 The small groups should have access to project documents, process documentation,
department guidelines and policy notes.
 The next activity would be to assign the task of matching the activities with the social
objectives and identify gaps. This again could be carried out by a small group drawn from
the managerial cadre and execution or implementation groups at the field level.
 All this information would be then looked into; to develop a plan for Social Auditing,
including who would be responsible in the department, monitoring and identifying the
resources required. This responsibility again could be given to a small group of three
individuals.
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 Stakeholder consultation, involving department functionaries and civil society, would be


the forum for sharing the Social Audit plan. This consultation would clarify the issues
important for Social Auditing, role of stakeholders, as well as commitments from them.

 The outcome of the consultation would feed into the process of detailing out: the indicators
to be monitored; which existing records to be used; and how additional information would
be collected. The next key step is to fix responsibilities for various activities. The activities
include preparing the formats for social account-keeping, compilation of data and
reporting the same on a monthly basis (internal use). Managers of the
department/programmes can use this information for monitoring as well as providing
feedback for improving performance and overcoming bottlenecks.
 Social Audit subscribes to good governance principles of participation, inclusiveness and
consensus. To translate these into activities, a department can start the preparatory
activities during any time in a financial year; form a small group, which would go through
relevant documents and lists down core values and social objectives. The group would
ideally spend about two days to complete this task. They would prepare a small note
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providing appropriate references to documents or based on the discussion among


themselves and colleagues in the department.
The Social Audit Network (SAN) has identified three steps to Social Accounting and Audit,
preceded by a Getting Ready stage and preparing the organisation before embarking on the
process.
Getting Ready: The organisation learns how social accounting works, what resources it
requires, decides how the process will be managed; and makes an informed decision about
whether to go forward. Often, this is done in conjunction with an orientation or a ‘taster
session’ in which representatives of the organisation explore the process of social accounting.
Step 1 Planning: In the first stage of social accounting, the organisation clarifies its mission,
objectives and activities as well as its underpinning values. It also analyses its stakeholders
through completing a ‘stakeholder map’. These exercises help the organisation to make
explicit what it does, why and how it does it, and who it works with and whom it seeks to
benefit.
Step 2 Accounting: In this phase, an organisation decides the ‘scope’ or focus of the social
accounts, especially if it will build a comprehensive picture over time. The organisation then
sets up ways of collecting relevant information over a period of time to report on performance
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and impact against its values and its objectives, encompassing both quantitative and
qualitative. The information is then brought together and analysed.
For a social audit to be meaningful it must study areas of decisions and actions and use
indicators that are relevant to the organization. The key is to choose variables on the basis of
reasoning and knowledge of their significance — not just because they can be measured – and
to choose indicators that can measure accurately these variables. Any projected impacts
should be identified, including potentially negative ones. These projections can guide decisions
about what to measure and how. The usefulness of variables and indicators is enhanced when
there is some way to set the information in context, such as clearness of the rationale about
why these are the ones to assess, or comparability of the information to past performance or
appropriateness of the information to become a baseline against which to compare future
results, or comparability to an appropriate external benchmark, or compatibility to goals or
targets set by the organization or to regulatory standards. Social audit literatures are only just
beginning to come to grip with the importance of methodology. But as it is at present, being
still an evolving field, it now integrates certain principles and practices of the social sciences.
This is especially the case when the auditor wants a representative sampling of the
perceptions and motivations of various stakeholders or wants to assess more deeply the social
consequences of organizational outputs.
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4.4 Social Audit Unit

Gram Sabha is, perhaps, the best social audit unit in our new democratic institutions
(Mathew, 1999). To day the Panchayats provide the best fora to implement social audit. On 4
July 1996 the Kerala Government constituted a Committee on Decentralisation with Dr.Satya
Brata Sen as its Chairman. For effective social audit, the Sen Committee had suggested
setting up of committees by Panchayats at various levels. First, Social Audit Committees are
compulsory at the Block Samiti and the District Panchayat levels, consisting of respected
citizens and professionals, to audit developmental programmes whenever they deem it
appropriate. Second, special women’s watchdog committees should be there at the level
Gram Panchayats and Municipalities. It should have two nominees of each Gram Sabha or
Wards Committee, one being a member of the Scheduled Caste or the Scheduled Tribe. Such
committees would have the same rights as social audit committees and would scrutinize costs,
estimates, the quantity and quality of materials used in works, adherence to norms in
selection, etc. (Rasquinha, 1977).

The Satya Brata Sen Committee has also suggested several means to facilitate the social
audit: (a) Making all estimates, list of beneficiaries, assistance given in each scheme, muster
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rolls, bills, vouchers, accounts, etc., open documents for scrutiny by any citizen and providing
photocopies of them on payment of actual cost. (b) Stipulating that all applications for various
licenses, permits, certificates given to Local Self Government Institutions are given a queue
number and this priority should not be violated. Registers indicating date of application and
date of clearance in each case should be available for reference by any applicant. If possible
copies should be published in the notice board. (c) Making public, assessment of tax, grant of
exemption, etc., to ensure that there are no complaints of undue preferential treatment to
some people (Rasquinha, 1977). If these guidelines are followed, then social audit will become
a powerful social institution (Mathew, 1999).

4.5 Levels of Inquiry in Social Audit:

Social audit by its very nature deals mostly with reports on outputs - to document what the
organization is actually doing and how it is doing. Given such, at the most elementary level,
social audit may be made only to report on some data, or perhaps some statistics, and the
task may be quite simple and the data readily available, and even if at times the data are
difficult to find and calls for knowledge and skill with information sources, little is presented in
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terms of inferences or conclusions. Or, at the second level, the social audit may call for
description to answer on questions of who, what, when, where, and sometimes how, and
involves only single variable frequency distribution or even multivariate relationships or
multiple variable cross-tabulations with little inferences or correlations gained, but still little is
given in terms of explanation or prediction.

So, after gaining a handle on these outputs, the natural flow of an inquiring mind goes and
begins to shift focus to “so what?” or why certain results happen the way they happen. In
other words, the concern is now shifted to the effects of these outputs to the individuals who
are direct beneficiaries of the output and to the communities of these individuals. This is
indeed a reality. Can the organization claim to be accomplishing what it has intended or what
was intended? This is one significant challenge. Here, it has to be established that the impact
that shows up is really the result of an input that the organization had made, and not a
consequence of some other factors.

In the study of outcomes, the auditor needs to build a theory, also called a hypothesis, of
the effects of organizational outputs on the community, given the various factors that co-exist
within it. The theory gives focus and accounts for all the forces that caused a certain
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phenomenon to occur, as it guides the direction of the study, limits what shall be studied and
provides a framework for organizing the conclusions that will come out.

The study of outcomes is truly a difficult one. One possible way is to put comparatives for
each area of concern being measured, and comparatives of the organization’s targets. Another
is the use of multiple indicators of the same area of concern or variables and multiple
measures of each indicator. And still another is studying the convergence of all findings or
finding the causes of the findings. And above all, it is also necessary that the social audit begin
now to employ various methods of inquiry such as interviews, surveys, compilation of
statistics, case studies, and many others.

4.6 How does one conduct a social audit of a policy/law?

Singh (2007) argues that whereas the process of conducting a social audit for policies and
laws is not very different from that of conducting such an audit for specific schemes, as
described a little later, obviously some of the questions asked and the issues discussed differ.
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Therefore, given below is a sample of generic questions that need to be raised, both about the
process of formulation, and the outcome, of a policy or law.

A Sample Set of Generic Questions Relating to the Social Audit of a Policy/Law

Stage Process questions Outcome questions


1. Who all were involved in Has the correct issue been
Identifying identifying the issue? identified? (e.g. Providing assured
the issue Were they appropriately employment to rural populations;
representative? facilitating people’s access to
information; providing a humane
process and package for resettling
people displace by development
activities).
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Were they adequately Has the issue been formulated


and appropriately appropriately? (e.g. Is employment
informed? (e.g. Given formulated as a right? Has the right
clear and to information been recognised as a
understandable fundamental right with minimum
documentation in local exclusions? Has displacement been
languages, with enough seen as the last possible resort?)
time for assimilation?)
Were the views of all the Is it really the highest priority from
stakeholders given due among the various issues that could
importance? have been identified? (e.g. NREGA,
Was the process should the right to universal health
appropriately or universal education be given a
transparent? priority over this right?)
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2. Who all were involved in Is the policy/law desirable? ( eg.


Formulatin formulating the NREGA, would this divert too many
g the policy/law? Were they financial resources from other, more
policy/law. appropriately important issues, or would it make
representative? people dependent on government
schemes?)
Were they adequately Does the policy/law protect all
and appropriately relevant interests, especially those of
informed? the weakest/least articulate? Is it
just? (eg Rehab. Policy, does the
policy protect the interests of project
proponents, especially, does it
protect the interests of the landless,
the widows, and the host
communities?)
Were the views of all the Is it implementable in part or whole?
stakeholders given due (eg. RTI Act, will it work if the
importance? information commissions are
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Was the process manned by bureaucrats? Eg. Rehab.


appropriately Policy, would the rehab. policy work
transparent? if there is no independent rehab.
Commission?)
3. Who is implementing the Is the policy/law having the intended
Implementi policy/law? Are these impact? (eg. For RTI, is it leading to
ng the individuals/institutions greater empowerment of the people
policy/law. appropriate? and lessened corruption and mal-
governance?)
Is it being implemented If not, why not?
in an appropriate
manner?
Are all the resources Is it having any unintended and
required available and undesirable effects? (eg. For RTI, is it
the individual and leading to paralysis in government
institutional capacities functioning, or delays in decision
in position? making?)
Is the implementation If so, why? How can this be
appropriately prevented?
transparent?
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4.7 What is involved in conducting a social audit for a


scheme/programme?

According to Singh (2007), a social audit is conducted over the life span of a scheme or
programme, and not just in one go or at one stage. The activities that constitute a social audit
include:

d. Making people aware of their rights, entitlements and obligations under the
scheme/programme.
e.Specifically, making them aware of their right to participate in the ongoing process of
social audit.
f. Making sure that all the forms and documents are in simple, easily understandable,
language and structure and available in local languages.
g. Also ensuring that all relevant information is publicly displayed on boards and
through posters and is also read out at appropriate times for the convenience of the
people, especially those who cannot read.
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h. Ensuring that the decision making process, especially for those decisions that are
critical and/or vulnerable to distortions, is transparent and open and carried out, as far
as possible, in the presence of the affected persons.
i. Making certain that all decisions, along with reasons, as appropriate, are also
communicated as soon as they are made to the affected people, and in manner that
makes it easy for them to comprehend.
j. Where there is a need for measuring, inspection or certification, ensuring that
randomly selected individuals, from among the affected persons, are involved on a
rotational basis.
k.Also ensuring that members of the public and especially those directly affected, are
facilitated to inspect and verify records, inspect works and generally monitor planning
and implementation.
l. Where required, to have a formal public hearing (jan audit manch) where pertinent
information is put before the public and verified in consultation with the affected
persons.
m. Ensuring that the findings of the social audit process are acted upon as they
become available and that apart from addressing the specific issues, systemic changes
are also brought about.
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Singh (2007) describes step by step the process of conducting a social audit for specific
schemes or programmes, to help those from among the government and people’s institutions
who want to organise a social audit. The specific examples taken are from the NREGA.
However, though the general structure will remain the same for all schemes and programmes,
specific changes will need to be incorporated for each scheme in order to accommodate the
unique characteristics of each scheme.

Step 1: Study the details of the scheme and familiarise oneself with all the provisions and
requirements of the scheme and of the Right to Information Act.

Step 2: Identify the various stages of the scheme, especially those where decisions have to
be made, beneficiaries identified, sites selected, strategies determined, details specified, etc.
Given below is an example from the NREGA of identification of stages.

For the NREGA, which provides employment as a right, the identification of stages can be
best done in terms of the entitlements provided under the act. These are:

1. The entitlement to register one’s family.


2. The entitlement to a job card.
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3. The entitlement to apply for work.


4. The entitlement to participate in the process of preparation of shelf of projects/
selection of sites.
5. The entitlement to participate in the development & approval of technical
estimates/issuance of work order.
6. The entitlement to get work allotted within fifteen days of applying for it.
7. The entitlement to participate in the supervision of works.
8. The entitlement to receive full wages for the work done, as per the prescribed rates.
9. The entitlement to receive unemployment allowance, if work is not allotted in the
stipulated fifteen days.
10. The entitlement to be involved in the evaluation of the works undertaken under this
act.

Step 3: For each of these stages, identify the vulnerabilities, in terms of what can go wrong,
what can be corrupted, what distortions can occur or what biases can creep in. Given below is
an example of possible vulnerabilities from the NREGA. Detail methodology for conducting a
social audit for activities under the NREGA are given in chapter 3. Similarly, details of how to
156

integrate social auditing into the Pradhan Mantri Gram Sadak Yojna (PMGSY) and the
Integrated Child Development Programme (ICDP) are given in chapter 6 and 7 respectively.

ENTITLEMENT VULNERABILITIES
The entitlement to register 1. Absence of the concerned functionary.
one’s family as Potential 2. Denial of registration to persons
Beneficiaries In The Rural applying to the scheme
Employment Guarantee 3. Incomplete list of adults in each
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Scheme household
4. Registration of bogus
families/individuals
5. Rejection of “incomplete” registration
forms.
6. Asking for money for registering
names/ families.
The entitlement to a job 1. Delay in receiving job cards
card 2. Issuance of false cards
3. Issuance of cards to ineligible
persons
a.To non-residents
b. To minors
c.To those not members of the listed
family
4. Non-issuance of a job card
5. Asking for money for issuing job
card.
The entitlement to apply 1. Non-acceptance of work application by
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for work the relevant functionary


2. The wrong date or no date recorded on
the work application.
3. Rejection of “incomplete” forms
The entitlement to 1. Selection of a low priority or
participate in the process inappropriate work.
of preparation of shelf of 2. Selection of work that serves a vested
projects/ selection of sites interest.
to be taken up in a 3. Lack of public participation/
particular Ward Sabha consultation for selecting work/sites.
and/or Gram sabha.
The entitlement to 1. Exaggerated/ inaccurate technical
participate in the estimates.
development & approval 2. Inclusion, in estimate, of unnecessary
of technical expenditure.
estimates/issuance of 3. Excessive rates and material.
work order 4. Unclear work order that does not make
the details of the work clear/leaves
scope for mis-interpretation.
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The entitlement to get 1. Giving out-of-turn allotments.


work allotted within fifteen 2. Favouring or discriminating against
days of applying for it people in allotting type/location of work.
3. Not respecting the gender quota.
4. Not informing the applicant and then
showing him/her as absent.
5. Demanding money for allotting work
The entitlement to 1. Recording of non-existent (ghost)
participate in the workers.
supervision of works. 2. Recording of fictitious (Ghost) works.
3. Work not conforming to work
specifications/ prescribed standards
4. Supply of less than sanctioned/poor
quality materials and tools.
The entitlement to receive 1. Non-payment of wages
full wages for the work 2. Late payment of wages.
done, as per the 3. Under payment of wages.
prescribed rates. 4. Payment of wages to the wrong
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person.
5. Payment of wages in the name of non-
existent (Ghost) workers.
6. Payment of wages for non-existent
projects.
The entitlement to receive 1. Denial of unemployment allowance by
unemployment allowance, wrongly accusing a person for not
if work is not allotted in reporting to work
the stipulated fifteen days 2. Late payment of unemployment
allowance
3. Payment of unemployment allowance
to the wrong person
4. Payment of unemployment allowance
to non-existent (ghost) persons.
5. Demand of bribe for paying allowance.
The entitlement to be 1. Taking and/or recording of improper
involved in the evaluation measurements
of the works undertaken 2. Not consolidating the information
under this act regarding the works in one place.
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3. Issuing of false completion certificates


4. Works not conforming to
specifications/ standards.
5. Data recorded in a confusing/
Incomprehensible manner.
The entitlement to 1. No public hearing actually takes place,
participate in a People’s but is shown on paper to have taken
Audit Meeting (Jan Audit place.
Manch), where all the 2. The public hearing is manipulated so
projects and activities that only those interested in one point of
related to the NREGA are view are allowed to attend.
assessed and publicly 3. People are prevented from fully
verified. participating or from speaking the truth.
4. The hearing is disrupted by rowdy
elements.

Step 4: Identify, for each stage, the appropriate measures to be taken to ensure that the
identified vulnerabilities are addressed through the relevant social audit mechanisms. These
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could include one or more of the measures listed at point 6 above and essentially includes
making all relevant information available publicly, ensuring that critical decisions are made
jointly with the affected people and in their presence, and that the process of verification,
measurement and certification is done with the involvement of the affected people.

Step 5: Identify the functionaries and institutions that would be responsible for ensuring that
the social audit is conducted, and conducted properly (see chapter 5 for allocation of
responsibility in the NREGA).

Step 6: Call a meeting of the village/community and discuss the principles and method of
social auditing in detail with them.

Step 7: Ensure that the identified institution and functionary complies with all the
requirements of a social audit.

Step 8: Every six months, prepare for a public hearing or a Jan Audit Manch. In this manch,
the affected persons collectively review the process of social audit. Also reviewed is the
progress of the scheme. The reports and data related to the scheme are publicly verified and
people are given an opportunity to discuss their problems with the implementing institutions,
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and understand their problems. A step by step guide to how a jan audit manch is to be carried
out is given below, with examples of how they can be applied to various schemes and
programmes in chapters 5, 6 and 7).

Experiments in Social Audit from Vithura Panchayat,


Kerala

The decentralisation process in Kerala is unique not only in


terms of the functions and finances transferred to the local self-
governments. It has also provided scope and space for
transparency and accountability to the people in a major way.
During this process, a few Grama Panchayats have gone far
ahead of others in experimenting with various mechanisms for
social audit.
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Vithura was one such panchayat which tried to create a


transparent local self-governance system with people's
participation. Right from plan formulation to implementation
and to the extent of plan monitoring and evaluation was
entrusted to the people. The key for success behind the Vithura
experiment was a well designed organisational setup, where
people's committees were formed and made functional. The
different types of committees that were formed are:
neighbourhood groups consisting of 50 neighbouring houses,
ward development committees, panchayat level academic
committees, subject groups, panchayat level women's
committee, panchayat level monitoring committee, children's
forum, people's committees for social audit etc. All these had
specific roles to play in the planning and implementation stages
of developmental programmes.

The social accounts were presented to the Grama Sabhas in


printed form, by the panchayats. It was presented in the Grama
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Sabha in such a way that any person could understand and


question any irregularity in the activities of the panchayats. The
difference with Vithura model of social audit is that it is not an
audit after the implementation. The people's committees
mentioned above were given information about the activities
regularly and they were empowered and supported by the
panchayat committee to monitor the activities. Thus, these
committees were active throughout the process of planning and
implementation. The basic structure of the Vithura social audit
mechanism was as follows:

The basic structure of the Vithura social audit mechanism was


as follows:

1. From each Grama Sabha, three persons were elected to be a


part of the panchayat level social audit committee.
2. Each one will be a part of one of the sector group like
productive, service and infrastructure sectors.
3. These committees conduct the audit and their report is
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presented in the Grama Sabha.


4. All the officers of the panchayat including that of the line
departments will be present in the Grama Sabha to clear doubts
with relevant documents.

Thus, a strong social audit mechanism was experimented at


Vithura, a Grama Panchayat in Trivandrum district of Kerala.

4.8 What is a Jan Audit Manch (People’ s Audit Manch)?

Apart from the ongoing process of social audit (described above), singh (2007) argues that
there should be a mandatory periodic review of all aspects of social audit in ward sabhas
(where they exist) and in the Gram Sabha, meetings to be held at least once every six months
for this purpose (to be called “Jan Audit Manch”). These will not only give people an
opportunity to review compliance with the ongoing requirements of transparency and social
audit for any scheme, programme or project, they will also serve as an institutional forum
where people can conduct a detailed public audit of all the decisions that have been made and
the work that has been carried out in their area in the preceding six months.
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The importance of this platform is not only the independent value of publicly auditing a
particular scheme or work, but also that it provides an opportunity to review the functioning of
all the transparency provisions at various points in the implementation of the scheme or
activity, with beneficiaries and all the stakeholders residing in the area. The social audit
compliments the financial audit, and facilitates examination of various aspects of the
scheme/project/activity by the people. This is beyond the scope of the financial audit. It
provides an institutional platform for people to seek and obtain information, verify financial
expenditure, examine the provision of services, assets or entitlements, the reflection of
priorities through choices made, quality of work, and quality of services of the staff, etc. While
the social audit must be seen as an ongoing process, the ward/gram sabha Jan audit manch is
a crucial platform for ensuring peoples participation in all aspects of the audited entity..
Because of the requirement to read information out aloud, the manch facilitates the
participation of people who don’t have the literacy skills to understand documents. It is
therefore mandatory that such social audits be conducted on a bi-annual basis, and that the
concerned officers be made responsible for ensuring they take place.

4.8.1 How to conduct a Jan Audit Manch?


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The Jan Audit Manch has three phases: The preparatory phase, the organisational phase,
and the implementation phase.

A. The Preparatory Phase

The success of a social audit is dependent on the open and fearless participation of all the
people- particularly the potential beneficiaries of the programme. Effective public
participation is dependent on adequate publicity about the meeting as well as informed
public opinion, dependent on prior information provided to people in a demystified form.

Publicity

It must be ensured that sufficient publicity be given to the date, time, importance and
sanctity of the social audit, so that maximum participation is ensured. This must be
facilitated through at least the following measures:

• People should be aware of the months when the Jan Audit Manch is to be held so that it
becomes a regular event that people are aware of. The governments should issue
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instructions about the time of year when it is convenient for people to attend such
meetings
• Announcement of the specific date, time and location of the Jan Audit Manch at least
one month in advance.
• Use of traditional modes of publicity like informing people through beating of drums,
and modern means like mike announcements.
• Notices on the notice board, in newspapers, and through pamphlets etc.
• Conducting these audits in a campaign mode so that the entire administration gears
up to meet the institutional requirements of the manch, and the campaign encourages
people to attend.

Preparation of Documents

The full and efficient participation of people in the social audit manch is dependent on full
information. This is not only facilitated through easy access to all documents and
information while the scheme/activity/works are in progress, but preparing for the social
audit by collating information and demystifying the information so that people can look at
summaries of information before the social audit, and these summaries can be read out
aloud during the Jan Audit Manch. In this connection it is essential that:
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• All the relevant documents, including complete files of the works or copies of them be
made available for inspection at the gram panchayat office at least fifteen days in
advance of the jan audit. There should be free and easy access to all residents of the
panchayat to these documents during this period, and no fees should be charged for
inspection. During this period, if anyone wants copies of the documents, they should be
provided at cost price as soon as possible, but no later than five days of the request
being made.
• Summaries of muster rolls and of Bills, where relevant, must be prepared (in a specially
designed format) in advance for presentation in the Jan Audit. If possible, these
summaries should be put onto charts for public display on the day of the jan audit, and
to put up at the panchayat office during the fifteen day pre-audit phase
• The original files should be available on the day of the jan audit, so that any information
can be cross checked
• The activities/works to be taken up for audit should be listed in advance, and the list
should be put up on the notice boards, along with the other items on the agenda

B. The Organisational Phase


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The Jan Audit Manch is a platform where the independence and facilitating nature of the
institutional arrangements will contribute directly to its credibility. It is essential to ensure
that proceedings are conducted in a transparent and non-partisan manner, where the
poorest and most marginalized can participate and speak out in confidence and without
fear. Care has to be taken that the manch not be manipulated by vested interests.
Towards this end:

• The time of year for the manch meetings must be such that it is convenient for as many
residents to attend- in particular, those who are directly involved with the entity being
audited, and all marginalized communities.
• The timings must similarly be convenient so that women can also attend.
• The quorum of the manch must be the same as for all gram sabhas, and the quorum
must be maintained as per separate categories (in a specially designed format) Social
audit objections must however be recorded at all times, and lack of a quorum should not
be taken as a reason for not recording objections.
The social audit Manch must be chaired by an individual independent of the implementing
agencies in the panchayat. The ward panch/ panchayat president must not chair this
meeting.
• The secretary of the manch must also be an official from outside the panchayat.
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• The person responsible for presenting the information should not be a person
responsible for implementing the work. The vigilance committee, or a school teacher for
instance could be considered for the purpose of reading aloud the information as per the
required format.
• All officials responsible for implementation must be required to be present at the jan
audit manch and be required to answer querries from members of the gram sabhaa.
• Decisions and resolutions must be made by vote, but dissenting opinion must be
recorded.
• Minutes must be recorded as per the format (in a specially designed format), by a person
from outside the implementing agencies, and the minute register must be signed by
people at the beginning and end of the meeting (after the minutes are written).
• The agenda (generic agenda given below) must be gone through including the
transparency checklist, and all objections recorded as per format (in a specially designed
format).
• The action taken report of the last social audit must be read out at the beginning of each
jan audit manch.
• In addition, every district should also have a team of technical people from outside the
district (with the appropriate expertise, for example in engineering, accountancy, etc.)
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who will help in the preparation of information for dissemination, who will attend
selected jan audits, take detailed notes, and immediately after the jan audit, visit all the
sites and conduct detailed enquiries where people have testified that there is corruption.
• During the jan audits, right to information provisions and ward sabha social audit
manuals, should be publicized so that this serves as an ongoing training for the public
vigilance process.

C. The Implementation Phase

The agenda for the social audit in the gram sabha must include a checklist to review
whether norms, provisions, rules and guidelines are being followed. The questions and
issues raised in the jan audit manch would include:

a) Whether the process of identifying beneficiaries (where relevant) was


conducted in a transparent manner
• Was a list prepared of all the possible beneficiaries?
• Was the first identification/selection done in a special ward sabha/gram sabha
conducted for the purpose?
• Was the list of identified/selected persons read out for verification in the Gram sabha?
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• Is the list of beneficiaries updated on an ongoing basis?


• Is the updated list regularly put up on the Panchayat notice board?
• Are there any eligible beneficiaries who have been left out of the list?

b) Whether the applications for benefits/entitlements being dealt with


appropriately?

• Where potential beneficiaries have to apply for their benefits/entitlements, are their
applications being received and acknowledged?
• Are they getting their benefits appropriately and in time?
• Is the distribution of benefits/entitlements being done in a transparent manner, with
lists being put up on the panchayat notice board for public notice and display?
• Are there any pending complaints about the receipt of applications, the allotment of
benefits/entitlements, etc.?

c) Transparency in the sanction of work/project/activity

• Was the sanctioned work/ activity appropriate and optimal?


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• Was the final identification done in a transparent manner with the involvement of
local stake holders?
• Was there involvement of the local stake holders in the preparation of the
technical estimate?
• A list of all the works/activities sanctioned in the six month period must be read out
aloud, along with amount sanctioned, and amount spent on the works.
• Has the list of work/activities sanctioned been made public through notice boards etc.,
and kept updated?

d) Transparency in the implementation of work

• Was there a board on the work site giving details of sanctioned amount, work
dimensions, and other requisite details?
• Was an open transparency meeting held before commencement of the work to
explain the work requirements to the workers, including the labour and material
estimates as per the technical sanction?
• Were the muster rolls (where relevant) available for public scrutiny at all times at the
work site?
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• Was there a work site material register maintained, along with verification by at least
five workers whenever material came to the site?
• Was a daily individual measurement of work conducted in a transparent manner where
piece rate norms were in force?
• Was the measurement of the work done by the junior engineer in the presence of a
group of workers?
• Were any complaints made? Were they addressed within prescribed/appropriate period
by the grievance redressal authority?
• Was an open transparency meeting held within seven days of the completion of
the work, where all those who worked on the site, and residents of the village where
the work took place are invited to look at the entire records. Compliance of the
requirement to hold this meeting must be made necessary before the completion
certificate is issued

e) Making of wage Payments (where relevant)

• Were wages paid within prescribed/reasonable period?


• Were wages paid at a designated public place at a designated time?
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• Were all payment details available for public scrutiny before the payments were made
(for example, by putting up muster roll copies on notice boards etc)?
• Were payment details read out aloud in public while making payments”
• Were payments made by an agency other than the one implementing the work
• Was compensation given as per the provision of the payment of wages act for late
payments?
• Are there any wage payments which are still due?

f)Post Facto auditing of the records and accounts of each work undertaken

• Does the file have all the documents required?


• Were all the documents available for scrutiny at least 15 days before the jan audit
manch?
• Were charts prepared of the summary sheets for public display and scrutiny before and
during the social audit?
• The muster roll summary (where relevant) must be read out aloud to check for
discrepancies.
• The summary of the bills must be read out aloud to check for discrepancies.
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• The measurement book summary (where relevant) must be read out aloud
• The photographs taken, before, during, and after the work must be available for public
display and scrutiny during the jan audit manch.
4.9 What resources are needed?
Leadership
One person or a group of people will lead on the social accounting work. The involvement
and commitment of the organisation’s senior management are essential. It is recommended
that staff at all levels be involved with consulting stakeholders and measuring progress,
performance and impact.
Proficiencies or skills
It is helpful for someone on staff to have experience with social research, e.g. surveys and
other methods of consultation. If the organisation doesn’t have this proficiency, it may be
helpful to bring in some outside assistance.
Staff time
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Staff time is required throughout the social accounting cycle. Generally more time is needed
to set up the process at the beginning and to compile, analyse and write up the information at
the end.
Courses, support, and information
Nearly all organisations find introductory sessions to be very useful, and many require ongoing
support throughout the process, depending upon their skills and experience, and the internal
time they are able to dedicate to the process, especially in the first round of accounts.
Consultants may also help with consulting stakeholders – providing someone impartial to help
collect difficult or sensitive information – or to help compile and analyse information. The SAN
Social Accounting Manual and AA1000 Assurance Standard are available to assist
organisations in the process.

4.10 How Core Values are linked to Indicators?

Indicators reflect the tangible outcomes of the values, which could be measured. They are
the key building blocks for understanding overall performance, social responsibility and social
benefits. These indicators are derived from the values of the department/programme,
stakeholders or society.
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Values of the departments/organisations are reflected in their mission statements,


programme and project objectives. Good governance principles, which form the core values of
any government department, are also translated into performance indicators. Staff
expectations and satisfaction, beneficiary expectations and satisfaction, and other indicators
identified through stakeholder consultations are also measured through direct or indirect
indicators. Societal core values are those that are made explicit through norms and codes, and
in terms of expectations, which could be matched with the performance of the department/
programme on outputs/outcomes or impacts.

The following three tables list out the values, information areas and indicators, separately
for department/organisation, stakeholders and society/community/groups within. This is a
useful indicative list. A department/organisation has to undertake a consultative process to
identify and prioritise indicators, which are specific to its aims and activities. It is important
that the indicators are context-specific and address stakeholders' and society's concerns.

4.11 How do we identify the Indicators?


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Consultative process is the only suggested means for identifying the indicators. As a first
step, a small group, consisting of say 3 to 5 individuals, who are drawn from the department
/organisation, should take the responsibility for listing down the values, objectives and
indicators of the department. A stakeholder consultation would be the larger forum, which
could discuss this further and add indicators relevant from stakeholders' point of view and
societal values. It depends on for whom we are developing the indicators.

The selection of indicators should be completely based on the communities’ requirements


regarding the type of advancement they would like to capture. While some communities
develop indicators within the framework of sustainability, others use the framework of healthy
communities or quality of life. Whatever be the framework for identifying the indicators,
government departments, NGOs and other civil society organisations can bring many different
sectors of the community together, foster new alliances and relationships, provide all citizens
with a better compass for understanding community problems and assets, and drive
community change. Unique partnerships for improving communities can be formed as
community members begin to appreciate the linkages among seemingly unrelated aspects of
community life. For example, a government department may see a new correlation between
new jobs created, better housing and increased access to health-care, whereas an
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environmentalist may comprehend the new developments as an increase in environmental


planning and protection.

4.12 How do we select good Indicators?

Indicators could be direct or indirect (proxy). Indirect indicators are used if collecting data
on direct indicators is time-consuming, unreliable or expensive. For Social Auditing purposes, it
is important to select indicators that could reliably measure changes brought about by the
programme as well as social benefits.

 Valid — measure what they are intended to measure and capture effects due to the
programme intervention rather than external factors;
 Reliable — verifiable and objective so that if measured at different times or places or with
different people, the conclusions would be the same;
 Relevant — directly linked to the objectives of the programme intervention;
 Technically feasible — capable of being assessed and measured;
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 Usable — the indicator should be understandable and ideally provide useful information to
assess programme performance and for decision-making;
 Sensitive — capable of demonstrating changes and capturing change in the outcome of
interest (national per capita income is unlikely to be sensitive to the effects of a single
intervention);
 Timely — possible to collect relatively quickly;
 Cost-effective — the information provided by the indicator is worth the cost to collect,
process and analyse;
 Ethical—collection and use of the indicator is acceptable to those providing the
information.

4.13 Who are the Stakeholders?

Stakeholders are those

 whose interests are affected by the issue or those whose activities strongly affect the
issue;
 who possess information, resources and expertise needed for strategy formulation and
implementation;
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 who controls implementation and instruments.

For any department, the stakeholders are the department staff at different levels, other line
departments and the beneficiaries in the project area.

Is it necessary to involve Stakeholders in Social Audit?

Stakeholders are the extension of the department as they influence, execute or facilitate
department functioning. Social Audit thus needs to encompass their views on service delivery
as well of those seeking benefits from the department. The following are the principles for
identifying stakeholders.

 Inclusive - do not leave out any stakeholder who is affected or is impacted;


 Representative - of different segments in the society; both male and female, sub
segments of beneficiary, geographically representative;
 Relevant - includes only relevant stakeholders; those who have important stakes in the
process;
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 Balanced - is not skewed towards understanding only implementation mechanisms or


benefits reached to the community, but instead gains a balance that would yield
comprehensive assessment at all levels of implementation.

Their participation in Social Audit would serve following purposes:

 Assessing the benefits as perceived by the beneficiaries;


 Giving the department an opportunity to seek suggestions for optimising efforts;
 Contributing towards initiating ownership among all stakeholders.

Stakeholder Consultation

Identified stakeholders should meet twice or more depending on the requirement to


discuss values, audit boundaries, indicators and involvement of stakeholders in the process of
Social Audit. It should be one or two days of consultative workshop using participatory
methods. To begin with, the stakeholders should be organised for identifying values and audit
areas. This would also help in preparing the Social Audit plan and in identifying the extent of
involvement of different stakeholders. Subsequently, the stakeholders should finalise the
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indicators and finally the consultation should result in a detailed report including an action
plan.

How do we identify Stakeholders?

To identify stakeholders and their roles and to ensure their involvement, the department
needs to address the following:

The stakeholders of any organisation can be identified from different sectors who are
directly or indirectly involved in the programme or the organisation. These could be from both
the implementation sectors and the users/beneficiaries of the programme/organisation.
Generally, stakeholders can be identified based on immediate and long-term benefits in
relation to the objectives of the programmes. For example, if the programme selected is
'women empowerment through formation of self-help groups and micro credit societies', to
enlist stakeholders and collect information on how these processes have contributed to
empowerment, the stakeholders should include not only those who are current members of
micro credit societies or self help-groups, but also involve those who have benefited from the
process to truly assess the achievement of the women empowerment objective.
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Further, in the context of understanding the outcome of the project activities contributing
towards generation of social capital and benefits at the societal level, the assessment through
an inclusive approach also needs to assess the perceptions and views of those who are not
benefited through programme activities. This approach, thus, ensures the involvement of
nonbeneficiaries as stakeholders in the process of Social Audit.

The different stakeholders in programme implementation generally include the


Government (policy makers, officials, local government functionaries, department staff at
different levels, and other line departments), NGOs, civil society groups, and the direct
beneficiaries (primary stakeholders). A comprehensive list of all the stakeholders affected both
positively and negatively by externalities of the programme can be put in order based on their
interests/benefit and sacrifice in any programme.

Some of the other questions that need to be answered in the process of identifying
stakeholders are:

 How do we rate their awareness about the department programmes and functions?
 On what aspects do we need information from the stakeholders?
 Are we seeking qualitative, quantitative, or process information from the stakeholders?
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How do we involve Stakeholders in Social Audit?

Stakeholders’ involvement should not be an ad hoc get together or a meeting to seek their
feedback as a token involvement. This needs to be integrated into the Social Audit process
during the planning stage, and indicators on which information will be sought from the
stakeholders need to be detailed out. Not all stakeholders will have information on all aspects
of the department’s programme and functions. Social Audit tools of assessment such as public
meetings, stakeholders’ workshops, beneficiary survey and focus group discussions in
combination with other tools such as Venn diagram etc, can be used for obtaining information
sought from the stakeholders.

4.14 Preparing the Final Report

Given that Social Audits are always undertaken in the context of a project/programme the
result obtained must be of direct relevance to the activity. Thus, in addition to generating
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descriptive information, Social Audits are designed to produce recommendations for changes
to the current or planned policies and programmes. The Social Audit report should fairly
represent the views of all the stakeholders involved in the process. The Social Audit report
needs to be done in ways which recognise the needs of the readers.

At this stage, the Social Auditor should think as to what he/she wants to put into the final
report. These are some of the suggestions:

 The final Social Audit report should focus on mapping the core objectives of the
department/programme and the conclusions arrived;
 Identify the needs of the readers and make the report relevant to them;
 Be selective but do not leave out important findings, which may affect what people do with
the report;

 Discuss the findings with others involved and put it together in various ways until it seems
to be good.
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After collecting adequate information using some of the tools mentioned above, the Social
Auditor should collate the information and prepare the Social Audit report. The following
sections give a brief overview for processing the data and preparing the Social Audit report.

Processing the data: All the data collected from secondary sources on different parameters
covering socio-economic indicators as well as primary information collected from the field
need to be tested against the core values/objectives of the department/institution. For
analyzing the data collected, the Social Auditor should group all the data on particular items
together and tabulate them across different stakeholder groups.

Content analysis: Here the Social Auditor should analyse the value perceived by different
stakeholder groups as to the value delivered by the government department/institution
concerned.

Drafting the report: Drafting the report needs to be done in a way which recognises the
needs of the reader or audience; the conclusions put in the report should be linked to the
original purpose for which the Social Auditing was designed.
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Harmonisation: The Social Auditor needs to recognise the fact that the concept of Social
Audit may not be familiar to the policy makers and the executive. So while furnishing the
findings of Social Audit report, the researcher may need to explain why they had chosen to
use that particular methodology and what is being highlighted in the final report as major
findings.

Presentation of final report: Many of the stakeholders may not read the whole report, but
will be interested in the summary and conclusions. So the Social Auditor should make these
points clear and comprehensive.

Sample Social Audit Report: A typical Social Audit report would have about six chapters:

Executive summary

Chapter I
_ Context
_ Objectives
_ Methodology
o Basic Approach
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o Sample – identification of stakeholders, selection of villages, etc.


o Audit areas and indicators
o Data collection instruments
o Data collection
_ Primary
_ Secondary
o Techniques of analysis
o Report format
Chapter II
Social accounting and book keeping
Chapter III
Perception of policy makers, departments, line departments and NGOs
Chapter IV
Perception of beneficiaries and community
Chapter V
Consolidated view of Social Audit
Chapter VI
_ Summary and conclusion
_ Implications for policy, programme and implementation
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Reporting Sheets

As an example, participation of stakeholders during planning, implementation and


monitoring is shown in the following tables. The first table shows audit areas, indicators and
the achievement score. How to calculate achievement score is given in the second table. One
can use the Venn diagram to visually represent the performance of the identified indicators.
Greater distance between the circles indicates lower degree of participation, whereas
overlapping of circles indicates higher degree of participation.

()()()()()
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CHAPTER - V
SOCIAL AUDITS AND THE
RIGHT TO INFORMATION ACT
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5.1 Using The RTI Act For Social Auditing


One essential and critical requirement for conducting social audits is the availability of all
relevant information and decision-making processes that are totally transparent. The
beginning of social auditing owes much to access to information, especially to bills,
vouchers and muster rolls related to expenditure by Panchayats and other government
institutions. Initially, this information had to be accessed despite stout resistance from the
concerned officials, and without legal backing. Initial right to information acts, in some
states, though relatively weak and ineffective, provided some legal basis for accessing
these documents. Fortunately, a very powerful and comprehensive national Act was passed
in 2005. The Right to Information (RTI) Act 2005 significantly facilitates the process of
conducting social audits. There are many provisions in the RTI Act that directly support
public scrutiny of schemes and programmes.

Section 4 (1)(b) of the RTI Act lists the information that public authorities need to make
public suo moto. This includes information relating to the norms set by it for the discharge of
its functions (S. 4(1)(b)(iv)) ; the rules, regulations, instructions, manuals and records, held by
it or under its control or used by its employees for discharging its functions (S. 4(1)(b)(v)); the
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particulars of any arrangement that exists for consultation with, or representation by, the
members of the public in relation to the formulation of its policy or implementation thereof (S.
4(1)(b)(vii)); the budget allocated to each of its agency, indicating the particulars of all plans,
proposed expenditures and reports on disbursements made (S. 4(1)(b)(xi)); the manner of
execution of subsidy programmes, including the amounts allocated and the details of
beneficiaries of such programmes (S. 4(1)(b)(xii)); particulars of recipients of concessions,
permits or authorisations granted by it (S. 4(1)(b)(xiii));. Therefore, this information is required
to be publicly available for all programmes and schemes, without being asked for.

In addition, section 4 (1)(c) of the RTI Act requires that each public authority “ publish all
relevant facts while formulating important policies or announcing the decisions which affect
public” (emphasis added). This ensures that the public has an opportunity of evaluating draft
public policies while they are being developed. They also have the option to evaluate all
decisions in terms of the facts on which it was based.

Similarly, section 4(1)(d) requires all public authorities to “provide reasons for its
administrative or quasi-judicial decisions to affected persons”. Therefore, each public authority
is already required, under the RTI act to give reasons for all decisions made relating to the
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implementation of any scheme or project, to all the affected people. This makes the conduct
of a social audit very much easier.

The RTI Act also allows any one to access information regarding the functioning of a
scheme or project even after it is completed, by filing a specific request. Therefore, people
incharge of implementing schemes and projects are conscious that their records can be
publicly scrutinised at any time, even years after the event. This is a great deterrence to those
who might be able to manipulate a clean official audit and think that once the formal audit is
over they are safe from public scrutiny.

Perhaps the greatest advantage of the RTI Act is that it has made people aware that they
have a right to access information, a right that is legally enforceable, and is not restricted to
just a few bits of information but covers almost all the information that they might be
interested in. The RTI act not only assures them of this but also, given the penalties that are
prescribed for illegitimate delay or refusal, ensures that they can exercise this right and
actually get this information.

The RTI Act guarantees to the people that they can always, on their own, conduct a social
audit of any scheme or programme that they think needs their scrutiny, even if the concerned
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public authority has not organised a social audit. They can independently access this
information and ask explanations of the government. The fact that the RTI Act allows them to
do this is makes it futile for public authorities to avoid holding formal social audits or holding
them only on paper.

A brief description of the RTI act is given below.

5.2 The Right To Information Act 2005

Coverage

The RTI Act 2005 covers all central, state and local government bodies and, in addition to
the executive, it also applies to the judiciary and the legislature. It covers all bodies owned,
controlled or substantially financed, either directly or indirectly by the government, and non-
governmental organisations and other private bodies substantially funded, directly or
indirectly, by the government. This would seem to include private schools, hospitals and other
commercial institutions that have got subsidies in the form of land at concessional rates or tax
concessions, among others.
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Apart from these, the law, interestingly, also covers the private sector as it provides the
citizen access to all information that the government can itself access through any other law
currently in force.

Definitions

The Act gives a detailed definition of the term ‘information', and significantly includes
"opinions and advices" as subject to disclosure. This clearly means that file notings are also to
be disclosed, unless their content falls under one of the exemptions specified in section 8 of
the act. The definition of ‘information’ also includes the right to inspect work, documents and
records held by the government, and allows for the extraction of certified samples for
verification. Therefore, the act moves beyond the realm of files and documents and enables
the public to actually examine the field reality.

Process of Access

The Act has set out a relatively simple process for accessing information. Each public
authority must appoint a Public Information Officer (PIO), who accepts requisitions and
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provides information. The PIO must ordinarily respond to a requisition within 30 days, but
extensions are allowed in some cases, for example when a third party is involved. Information
relating to the life or liberty of a person must, nevertheless, be provided in 48 hours.

Exemptions

The Act exempts certain categories of information from disclosure. Included are the
obvious exemptions of information, the disclosure of which would prejudicially affect the
sovereignty and integrity of India, the security, strategic, scientific or economic interests of the
State, relation with foreign State or lead to incitement of an offence; or information which has
been expressly forbidden to be published by any court of law or tribunal or the disclosure of
which may constitute contempt of court. It also exempts information, the disclosure of which
would cause a breach of privilege of Parliament or the State Legislature.

Information, including commercial confidences, trade secrets or intellectual property, the


disclosure of which would harm the competitive position of a third party, or information
available to a person in his fiduciary relationship, is also exempt. However, there is a public
201

interest override that specifies that such information can be made public if the competent
authority is satisfied that larger public interest warrants the disclosure of such information.

Also exempt is information received in confidence from foreign governments, or


information, the disclosure of which would impede the process of investigation or
apprehension or prosecution of offenders, or would endanger the life or physical safety of any
person or identity the source of information or assistance given in confidence for law
enforcement or security purposes.

Though cabinet papers, including records of deliberations of the Council of Ministers,


Secretaries and other officers are exempt, the decisions of Council of Ministers, the reasons
thereof, and the material on the basis of which the decisions were made becomes accessible
after the decision has been taken, and the matter is complete, or over, unless they are exempt
under any other section of this Act.

Also exempt is information that might violate copyright, except that of the state, or
personal information the disclosure of which has no relationship to any public activity or
interest, or which would cause unwarranted invasion of the privacy of the individual. However,
here also it can be disclosed if larger public interests so warrants.
202

There are some general clauses qualifying the exemptions. These include a clause that
specifies that any information that cannot be denied to the Parliament or a State Legislature
cannot be denied to any person. Also, where a part of a document is exempt the whole
document cannot be withheld. thus, the section that contains exempt information can be
removed, and the remaining part disclosed..

In another clause, it is stated that notwithstanding the exemptions specified in the law or
provisions of the Official Secrets Act, 1923, “a public authority may allow access to
information, if public interests in disclosure outweighs the harm to the protected interests.” In
addition, most of the exempt information becomes accessible after twenty years.

Complaints and Appeals

The Act envisages the setting up of independent Information Commissions, one at the
centre and one at each state, comprising one Chief Information Commissioner and up to ten
Information Commissioners. Complaints against violations of provisions of this act can be
made to the Information Commission. The act also provides for two levels of appeals against
the PIO, the first to an officer senior to the PIO, and the second to the central or state
Information Commission, against delay in supplying, or refusal to supply, information by the
203

PIO. The section on appeals specifies that the onus of proof that the denial of a request was
justified would be on the PIO. This necessitates the appellate authorities treating all
information as “disclosable” unless proved otherwise. The act also specifies that appeals
should be disposed off within 30-45 days.

Penalties

The Act stipulates penalties for PIOs found to be in violation of the act. For unreasonable
delay, the Information Commission can impose penalties at Rs. 250 per day, and also penalise
for refusal to accept requests, for malafide destruction of information, knowingly giving false
information etc., with an upper limit of Rs. 25,000. However, PIOs are given immunity for
actions done in good faith.

Universal Access

The Act also has provisions to ensure that all categories of people, especially the rural and
urban poor, can access information,. Towards this end, the act specifies that fees would be
reasonable, and must be waived for persons below the poverty line. There is no need to give
reasons for requisitioning information, nor for providing information about yourself beyond
204

your contact details. The government is also obliged to assist all requisitioners to formulate
requests, especially in the case of sensorily challenged individuals.

Suo Moto Disclosures

Public authorities are obliged to publish a great deal of information suo moto, including
relevant facts while formulating policies and making policy decisions. They are also bound to
explain quasi-judicial decisions to affected persons and to raise awareness and educate the
public about the law.

5.3 Integrating Social Audits Into The National Rural Employment


Guarantee Act

A. Integrating Social Auditing

The NREGA provides to the people certain entitlements. These are:

1. The entitlement to register one’s family.


2. The entitlement to a job card.
205

3. The entitlement to apply for work.


4. The entitlement to participate in the process of preparation of shelf of projects/
selection of sites.
5. The entitlement to participate in the development & approval of technical
estimates/issuance of work order.
6. The entitlement to get work allotted within fifteen days of applying for it.
7. The entitlement to participate in the supervision of works.
8. The entitlement to receive full wages for the work done, as per the prescribed rates.
9. The entitlement to receive unemployment allowance, if work is not allotted in the
stipulated fifteen days.
10. The entitlement to be involved in the evaluation of the works undertaken under this
act.

In order to ensure that each individual has the opportunity to get all that he/she is entitled
to, the process of social audits has been integrated and institutionalised in the process of
implementing this act and certain measures have been provided for to ensure full
transparency and participation of all stakeholders. These measures, as they correspond to
each specific entitlement, are listed below. Also listed are the dangers that confront the
206

potential beneficiary, as they try and get what they are entitled to. What each individual needs
to do, in order to ensure that these measures are effective, has also been indicated.

S ENTITLEME DANGERS TRANSPARENCY AND SOCIAL


AUDIT MEASURES TO BE
n. NT
INITIATED BY THE
GOVERNMENT (With
suggested action by the
people in bold italics)
1 The 1. Absence of the 3. The process of registration is
entitlement concerned required to be transparent. As
.
to register functionary. per the rules, it must be carried
one’s family 2. Denial of registration out publicly with facilities for
as Potential to persons applying people to verify their own
Beneficiaries to the scheme details, or those of others.
In The Rural 3. Incomplete list of 4. Initial registration would be
Employment adults in each carried out in a special gram
Guarantee household sabha convened for the
Scheme 4. Registration of bogus purpose.
families/individuals The people must attend all such
207

[Responsibilit 5. Rejection of gram Sabhas in large numbers


y to register: “incomplete” and be vigilant. They must
Gram Sewak/ registration forms. carefully observe the process to
GP Secretary] 6. Asking for money for ensure that no outsiders or
registering names/ ineligible people are being
families. registered, but they must also
watch the entries that are being
made and check from time to
time that only eligible persons are
being registered.

Where an eligible person or


family is being denied
registration, the people must
always be ready to intercede on
their behalf and question the
concerned functionaries on why
these eligible persons are being
denied registration Where the
concerned functionaries are not
co-operative, the people must
208

jointly complain to the relevant


authority.

5. A prior survey has to be


conducted by the gram
panchayat to enumerate all the
families and their adult
members who are eligible to
register. This is supposed to be
the basis for ensuring that all
persons who are eligible and
wish to be included in the
scheme, are accounted for.
6. This enumeration is also
supposed to help in preventing
the registration of
fictitious/ineligible names, but
is not to be used to exclude the
eligible who might not have
been listed.
Where there is any doubt about
209

any family, the people should


insist on consulting this survey.
They should also demand to see
the enumeration to ensure that
no eligible person has been left
out.

7. Subsequent to the initial


registration, there must be a
public reading in the Ward &
Gram Sabha of:
• Lists of all households
registered under the
scheme
• Lists of adults in each
household registered under
the scheme
210

8. A form, with a tear away


receipt at the bottom, must be
used for registration, and the
receipt given to the registered
person/family
9. If a form is incomplete in any
way, it would be the
responsibility of the concerned
functionary to have it
completed there and then.
10. The final list of registered
families/adults must be
verified, and complaints of
exclusion settled.
Again, the people must attend all
such ward and gram Sabhas in
large numbers and be vigilant.
They must carefully listen to the
names, as they are being read
out, and be ready to raise
objections if any ineligible or
211

fictitious names have been


included.

Where an eligible person or


family has been denied
registration, the people must
demand their inclusion. If this is
denied, then they must
collectively complain to the
relevant authority.

They must also examine the lists


that are being read out, in order
to ensure that what is being read
out is not different to what is on
the list.
11. The final list must be put up
for public display at the Gram
Panchayat office and updated
every three months.
The people must ensure that this
212

list is put up and regularly


updated, and also that it is
authentic and does not contain
any fictitious/ ineligible names.
12. Subsequent to the initial
registration, the process of
registration must remain
perpetually open at the gram
panchayat.
The people must also monitor this
and if there is any problem in
eligible people registering their
names subsequent to the initial
registration, this must be taken
up with the concerned
functionary and, if necessary,
with higher authorities.
2 The 1. Delay in 1. There is a one month time limit
entitlement receiving job cards for the supply of job cards,
.
to a job card 2. Issuance of from the date of registration.
false cards 2. The list of job card holders
213

[Responsibilit 3. Issuance of must be updated every month,


y for timely cards to ineligible and be available for inspection
distribution: persons at the Gram Panchayat office
Gram Sewak/ To non- 3. A file containing photocopies of
GP Secretary] residents all job cards issued must be
To minors open for inspection at the Gram
c. To those not Panchayat office.
members of the
listed family
4. Non-issuance of a
job card
5. Asking for money The people must ask the
for issuing job card. concerned functionaries to
explain the reasons for any delay
in distributing job cards over and
above the prescribed time limit. If
necessary, the RTI Act can be
used to get this information.
Where the reasons for delay are
not justifiable, or where there is a
very long delay, the matter must
214

be taken up by the people with


the higher authorities.

The people must also examine


the list and file on a regular basis
to monitor whether the
distribution of job cards is on
schedule and being done in a fair
manner.
3 The 1. Non-acceptance of 1. Individuals are entitled to send
entitlement work application by applications for work by post or
.
to apply for the relevant to deliver by hand.
work functionary 2. They have a right to an
2. The wrong date or immediate, written, signed and
[Responsibilit no date recorded on dated receipt.
y to receive the work application. Insist on a written and dated
and 3. Rejection of
receipt.
acknowledge “incomplete” forms
applications: 3. A date wise list, that is updated
Sarpanch] weekly, must be displayed at
the Gram Panchayat office,
215

along with a register detailing


the applications received.
The people must regularly
check this list and ensure that
the information is correct.
4. If an application is incomplete
in any way, it is the
responsibility of the concerned
functionary to have it
completed. Applications cannot
be rejected just because they
are incomplete.
The people should insist on
this.
4 The 1. Selection of a low 1. The shelf of projects/
entitlement priority or works/sites to be taken up
.
to participate inappropriate work. must be determined by the
in the 2. Selection of work gram sabha.
process of that serves a vested 2. They must also be assessed for
preparation interest. relevance and priority by the
of shelf of 3. Lack of public gram sabha
216

projects/ participation/ 3. A list of the finally selected


selection of consultation for projects, works, and sites, in
sites to be selecting work/sites. their order of priority, must be
taken up in a publicly displayed at the Gram
particular Panchayat office.
Ward Sabha The people must insist on
and/or Gram
deciding the projects and sites
sabha.
[Responsibilit that are to be taken up. They
y to facilitate
should participate fully and
this:
Sarpanch] actively in the process and
ensure that the final list contains
only those project sand sites, and
in the order of priority, decided by
them.
5 The 1. Exaggerated/ 1. Technical estimate has to be
entitlement inaccurate technical done with the involvement of
.
to participate estimates. the local people, and has to be
217

in the 2. Inclusion, in approved by the gram sabha.


development estimate, of The people must participate in
& approval of unnecessary this exercise and ensure that the
technical expenditure. estimates are realistic, that the
estimates/iss 3. Excessive rates and rates being quoted are as per
uance of material. local availability and that no
work order 4. Unclear work order unnecessary items of expenditure
that does not make are being included.
[Responsibilit the details of the 2. The format for the technical
y to facilitate: work clear/leaves estimate must be simple and
Junior scope for mis- understandable by the people.
Engineer/ interpretation. 3. Similarly, the sanction and
Sarpanch] work order format must be
people friendly.
4. This format must be put on
public display so that people
can access this information and
understand the details of the
work.
The people need to remain
vigilant and check the final
218

estimate and work order to


ensure that they are in
accordance with what was
collectively decided.

6 The 1. Giving out-of- 1. All work allocation registers


entitlement turn allotments. have to be maintained for
.
to get work 2. Favouring or public scrutiny at the gram
allotted discriminating panchayat office.
within fifteen against people in 2. It is the duty of the concerned
days of allotting functionaries to ensure that the
applying for it type/location of public is informed through
work. notice boards and through
[Responsibilit 3. Not respecting other measures ( like drum
y: Sarpanch] the gender quota. beating) every time a new
4. Not informing the batch of work is allotted. The
applicant and then date up to which work has been
showing him/her as allocated must also be made
absent. public every time work is
5. Demanding allocated.
money for allotting 3. A specific day (typically Sunday
219

work – as it is a holiday) and a


specific time and place
(typically at the gram
panchayat office) will be fixed
to disburse information about
the EGA.
4. On that day, the public will be
informed of the work allotted or
ready to be allotted, along with
the names of allottees, their
date of application, location
and type of work, and other
relevant information, including
explanation of how the job card
works.
5. At these meetings, for each of
the work allotted, the wage
norms will be explained to the
people and put up on the
notice board. The questions
that must be answered include:
220

What is the wage?


b. What is the wage norm
(How much per day/how
many of what will constitute a
full days work).
It is very important that as many
people as possible attend these
weekly meetings, on the
designated day. They must be
vigilant and ensure that all the
stipulated information is given to
them and must also verify the
fairness and authenticity of the
list of allotted work.
6. There will be individual
measurements of each persons
work, unless a group
collectively decides to have
joint measurements.

This is a right, and must be


221

insisted upon by the people.


7 The 1. Recording of non- 1. A board with details of work –
entitlement existent (ghost) estimates and running costs –
.
to participate workers. material, labour and funds, will
in the 2. Recording of be put up at every site, and
supervision of fictitious (Ghost) updated regularly. The format
works. works. will be user friendly.
3. Work not conforming 2. The muster rolls will be
[Responsibilit to work accessible upon demand.
y to facilitate: specifications/ The people must periodically
Gram Sewak] prescribed standards verify the information on the
4. Supply of less than board and in the muster rolls.
sanctioned/poor 3. Every week five randomly
quality materials and selected workers will have to
tools. verify and certify all of
bills/vouchers of their work site,
before they are passed.
The people must ensure that the
five workers selected are all
reliable and independent of the
authorities. These five workers
222

must verify all the documents


after carefully checking them.
4. A copy of the sanction/work
order will also be available for
public inspection orders at the
work site.
5. There would also be provisions
for access to samples of works,
to be taken as per the
procedure developed for the
RTI Act.
The people must also periodically
ensure that the work is going as
per the sanction/work order. They
must also take random samples
of the material as this would put
pressure on the authorities to
ensure that standards are
maintained.
6. A daily materials-register must
be kept, and verified by five
223

randomly selected workers


every day.
The people must ensure that the
five workers selected are all
reliable and independent of the
authorities. These five workers
must verify the daily materials
register after carefully checking
the relevant facts.

7. The daily/individual
measurement records for each
work and worker must be
available for public inspection.
This will only be an effective
check if people regularly inspect
these records and ensure that
they are accurate.
8 The 1. Non-payment of 1. Payments will be made in a
entitlement wages Public place on fixed days
.
to receive full 2. Late payment of (like in the weekly Sunday
224

wages for the wages. meetings) to ensure that


work done, as 3. Under payment of there can be no ambiguity
per the wages. regarding payments
prescribed 4. Payment of wages to 2. All recipients and amounts of
rates. the wrong person. payment will be read aloud to
5. Payment of wages in ensure that the illiterate are
[Responsibilit the name of non- not cheated, and also to
y: An existent (Ghost) check ghost payments.
independent workers. 3. A list detailing all payments
functionary ] 6. Payment of wages to be made will be put up in a
for non-existent public and easily accessible
projects. place prior to the reading
aloud of the list.
The people must attend, as
already stressed before, these
meetings and must remain
vigilant, carefully listening to the
list, as it is read out. They should
also verify the authenticity of the
list that is pasted.
4. Provisions will be made to
225

facilitate payments through


the post office and other
financial institutions.

5. Payments will be made, as far


as possible, by an agency
independent of the
implementing agency.
6. Disclosure of piece rate
measurement will be made
individually, and not en
masse so as to provide each
worker with his/her due
exactly. This would prevent
division of the wage earned
by ghost workers etc.
226

9 The 1. Denial of 1. A weekly public announcement


entitlement unemployment of work allocation will be made,
.
to receive allowance by and work allocation orders will
unemployme wrongly accusing a be displayed publicly (see 6
nt allowance, person for not above).
if work is not reporting to work 2. Payments will be made in a
allotted in the 2. Late payment of Public place on fixed days (the
stipulated unemployment fixed Sunday) to ensure that
fifteen days allowance there can be no ambiguity
3. Payment of regarding payments
[Responsibilit unemployment 3. All recipients and amounts of
y: Project allowance to the payment will be read aloud to
Officer/Gram wrong person ensure that the illiterate are
Sewak] 4. Payment of not cheated, and also to check
unemployment ghost payments.
allowance to non- 4. A list detailing all payments to
existent (ghost) be made will be put up in a
persons. public and easily accessible
5. Demand of bribe for place prior to the reading aloud
paying allowance. of the list.
5. Provisions will be made to
227

facilitate payments through the


post office and other financial
institutions.
6. The Gram Panchayat will
automatically generate, each
week, in advance of the weekly
meeting, a list of those eligible
for receiving the allowance.
The people must attend, as
already stressed before, these
meetings and must remain
vigilant, carefully listening to the
list, as it is read out. They should
also verify the authenticity of the
list that is generated by the Gram
Panchayat.
1 The 1. Taking and/or 1. Verification of works, for
entitlement recording of conformity with work order in
0
to be improper terms of specifications and
. involved in measurements quality, will be carried out by a
the 2. Not consolidating the Ward/Gram Sabha.
228

evaluation of information 2. An assessment of relevance of


the works regarding the works new works, along with
undertaken in one place. appropriateness, will also be
under this act 3. Issuing of false carried out by a Ward/ Gram
completion Sabha.
[Responsibilit certificates The people must participate in
y: Gram 4. Works not the verification and assessment
Sewak/ EG conforming to exercise, and ensure that the
Officer] specifications/ work done conforms with what
standards. was commissioned and is of use
5. Data recorded in a to the people.
confusing/ 3. Completion data will be made
Incomprehensible public in a people friendly
manner. format.

1 The 1. No public hearing 1. Comprehensive public hearings


entitlement actually takes place, will be held, relating to works
1
to participate but is shown on and individual entitlements, bi
. in a People’s paper to have taken annually at the Ward/Gram
Audit Meeting place. Sabha level for all works
(Jan Audit 2. The public hearing is completed in that period. The
229

Manch) , manipulated so that details of the requirements for


where all the only those interested this public hearing are given in
projects and in one point of view the next section.
activities are allowed to 2. On a random sampling basis,
related to the attend. these hearings will be attended
NREGA are 3. People are by state/central observers and
assessed and prevented from fully also by independent research
publicly participating or from groups.
verified. speaking the truth. 3. Wherever possible, audio-visual
4. The hearing is records of the public hearing
[Responsibilit disrupted by rowdy will be maintained.
y: Gram elements.
Sewak/ EG
Officer
This peoples audit meeting (Jan
Audit Manch) is perhaps the
most important element of the
social audit and people must
participate fully in this and
raise issues, without fear or
favour, in order to ensure that
230

the NREGA is being properly


implemented.

5.4 Institutional Structures

Though the main responsibility of ensuring that all these measures are properly and
faithfully implemented would be primarily of the panchayati raj institutions, with the gram
sabha being involved in all decision making and in planning, monitoring and evaluation, the
people will have to ensure that the PRIs do what is necessary. The sarpanch, the gram sewak,
and the gram panchayat secretary will be the critical functionaries. The junior engineer, the
project officer and the EG officer (as and when he/she is appointed), would also share some of
the responsibility.

State and Central Monitoring

As per the obligations under the NREGA, the over all responsibility for monitoring the
implementation of the NREGA rests with the Central and the State Governments. In order to
fulfil this obligation, the state and central governments will designate a sufficient number of
231

state and central observers who would, on a random sampling basis, attend the bi-annual
public hearings and determine the state of implementation. It would be important for the
people to ensure that these observers are made aware of the true nature of things and that all
problems and complaints are brought to their notice.

In addition, both the state and the central governments will also sponsor independent
surveys through reputed institutions that can, at a community and household level, collect
information about the functioning of the REGS. A related exercise can also assess, in
retrospect – say after two years, the durability, maintenance and public utility of the assets
created. Again, the people must assist in the carrying out of these surveys and ensure that all
critical facts are made available to the surveyors.

Capacity Development

If the process of social audit has to be effectively used, the capacities of the people and
people’s organisations will be developed and they would be familiarised with the method and
oriented towards the philosophy. For this, a network of institutions is being identified and a
cadre of trainers are being trained.
232

Complaints and Grievance Redressal Mechanism

If the social audit process is to be successful, there has to be an effective institutional


mechanism that can deal with complaints and grievances, and functions transparently, while
providing some protection to vulnerable individuals and families. The functioning of this
mechanism would be within time bound norms and it would be answerable to the affected
people for its actions and inaction.

()()()()()
233

CHAPTER - VI
METHOD OF ORGANISING A PEOPLES
AUDIT MEETING (JAN AUDIT MANCH)

6.1. Mandatory Social Audits in the Gram Sabha

Apart from the ongoing process of social audit enumerated above, there will be a
mandatory periodic review of all aspects of social audit in ward sabhas (where they exist) and
in the Gram Sabha meetings to be held at least once every six months for this purpose (To be
called “Jan Audit Manch”). These will not only give people an opportunity to review compliance
with the ongoing requirements of transparency and social audit, they will also serve as an
institutional forum where people can conduct a detailed public audit of all NREGA work that
has been carried out in their area in the preceding six months. The importance of this platform
is not only the independent value of publicly auditing a particular work, but also that it
provides an opportunity to review the functioning of all the transparency provisions at various
points in the implementation of the act with beneficiaries and all the stakeholders residing in
234

the area. The social audit compliments the financial audit, and facilitates examination aspects
of the programme by the people. This is beyond the scope of the financial audit. It provides an
institutional platform for people to seek and obtain information, verify financial expenditure,
examine the provision of entitlements, the reflection of priorities through choices made,
quality of work, and quality of services of programme staff. While the social audit must be
seen as an ongoing process, the ward/gram sabha Jan audit manch is a crucial platform for
ensuring peoples participation in all aspects of the NREGA. Because of the requirement to
read information out aloud, the manch facilitates the participation of people who don’t
have the literacy skills to understand documents. It is therefore mandatory that such social
audits be conducted on a bi-annual basis, and that programme officers be made responsible
for ensuring they take place.

There are three essential aspects regarding the bi-annual Jan Audit manch: The Publicity
and preparation before the social audit takes place; Organisational and procedural aspects of
the social audit; and the mandatory agenda for all aspects of an EGA social audit.
235

The Preparatory Phase

The success of a social audit is dependent on the open and fearless participation of all the
people- particularly the potential beneficiaries of the programme. Effective public participation
is dependent on adequate publicity about the meeting as well as informed public opinion,
dependent on prior information provided to people in a demystified form.

Publicity

It must be ensured that sufficient publicity be given to the date, time, importance and
sanctity of the social audit, so that maximum participation is ensured. This must be facilitated
through:

• People should be aware of the months when the Jan Audit Manch is to be held so that it
becomes a regular event that people are aware of. State Governments should therefore
issue instructions about the time of year when it is convenient for people to attend such
meetings
• Announcement of the specific date, time and location of the Janta Audit Manch” atleast
one month in advance
236

• Use of traditional modes of publicity like informing people through beating of drums, and
modern means like mike announcements,
• Notices on the notice board, in newspapers, and through pamphlets etc
• Conducting these audits in a campaign mode so that the entire administration gears up to
meet the institutional requirements of the manch, and the campaign encourages people to
attend

Preparation of Documents

The full and efficient participation of people in the social audit manch is dependent on full
information. This is not only facilitated through easy access to all documents and information
while the works are in progress, but preparing for the social audit by collating information and
demystifying the information so that people can look at summaries, of information before the
social audit, and these summaries can be read out aloud during the Jan Audit Manch. In this
connection it is essential that:

• All the relevant documents, including complete files of the works or copies of them be
made available for inspection at the gram panchayat office atleast fifteen days in
advance of the jan audit. There should be free and easy access to all residents of the
237

panchayat to these documents during this period, and no fees should be charged for
inspection. During this period, if anyone wants copies of the documents, they should be
provided at cost price as soon as possible, but no later than five days of the request
being made.
• Summaries of muster rolls and of Bills must be prepared (see format) in advance for
presentation in the Jan Audit. If possible, these summaries should be put onto charts for
public display on the day of the jan audit, and to put up at the panchayat office during
the fifteen day pre-audit phase
• The original files should be available on the day of the jan audit, so that any information
can be cross checked
• The works to be taken up for audit, should be listed in advance, and the list should be
put up on the notice boards, along with the other items on the agenda

6.2 Requirements for the Jan Audit manch

The Jan Audit Manch is a platform where the independence and facilitating nature of the
institutional arrangements will contribute directly to its credibility. It is essential to ensure that
proceedings are conducted in a transparent and non-partisan manner, where the poorest and
238

most marginalized can participate and speak out in confidence and without fear. Care has to
be taken that the manch not be manipulated by vested interests. Towards this end:

• The time of year for the manch meetings must be such that it is convenient for as many
residents to attend- in particular, those who are EGA workers, and all marginalized
communities
• The timings must similarly be convenient so that women can also attend
• The quorum of the manch must be the same as for all gram sabhas, and the quorum
must be maintained as per separate categories (see format) Social audit objections must
however be recorded at all times, and lack of a quorum should not be taken as a reason
for not recording objections
The social audit Manch must be chaired by an individual independent of the
implementing agencies in the panchayat. The ward panch/ panchayat president
must not chair this meeting
• The secretary of the manch must also be an official from outside the panchayat
• The person responsible for presenting the information should not be a person
responsible for implementing the work. The vigilance committee, or a school teacher for
instance could be considered for the purpose of reading aloud the information as per the
required format
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• All officials responsible for implementation must be required to be present at the jan
audit manch and be required to answer querries from members of the gram sabhaa
• Decisions and resolutions must be made by vote, but dissenting opinion must be
recorded.
• Minutes must be recorded as per the format (see format), by a person from outside the
implementing agencies, and the minute register must be signed by people at the
beginning and end of the meeting (after the minutes are written)
• The agenda (given below) must be gone through including the transparency checklist,
and all objections recorded as per format (see format)
• The action taken report of the last social audit must be read out at the beginning of each
jan audit manch.
• In addition, every district should also have a team of technical people from outside the
district (engineers and accountants) who will help in the preparation of information for
dissemination, who will attend selected jan audits, take detailed notes, and immediately
after the jan audit, visit all the sites and conduct detailed enquiries where people have
testified that there is corruption.
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• The report of these sample jan audits and the reports of the technical team should be
submitted to the district employment guarantee council in a specified time frame for
necessary action.
• During the jan audits, right to information provisions, ward sabha social audit manuals,
should be publicized so that this serves as an ongoing training for the public vigilance
process.

6.3 The Agenda for the Gram Sabha Social Audit

The Agenda for the social audit in the Gram sabha must include the following:

A checklist must be prepared to review whether norms and provisions in the Act, rules and
guidelines are being followed:

a) Whether the process of registration was conducted in a transparent manner

• Was a list prepared by the panchayat of all the possible households who might seek
registration.
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• Was the first registration done in a special ward sabha/gram sabha conducted for the
purpose
• Was the list of registered persons read out for verification in the Gram sabha
• Is Registration Open in the panchayat on an ongoing basis
• Is the registration list regularly updated and put up on the Panchayat notice board
• Is there anyone remaining who wants to register, but who has not yet been registered

b) Whether Job cards were prepared, issued, and updated in a transparent manner

• Were job cards issued within one month of registration


• Is the list of job cards regularly updated, and put up on the panchayat notice board?
• Is a file containing photocopies of all job cards available for inspection in the panchayat
office
• Was the job card issued free of cost, or was there a charge imposed for issuing the job
card
• Is there anyone who has not received a job card, or is there any other pending complaint

c) Whether the applications for work are being treated as per norms
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• Are workers receiving dated receipts for their application for work
• Are people being given work on time
• Is the allotment of work being done in a transparent manner, with lists of work allotments
being put up on the panchayat notice board for public notice and display
• Are those who have not been given work on time, received unemployment allowance? How
many people have outstanding payments of unemployment allowance, and are they being
compensated for late payments as per the guidelines?
• There must be a reading aloud of a list of workers who have received unemployment
allowance (if any) in the last six months, along with the amounts disbursed, and the basis for
calculation of the amounts
• Are there any pending complaints about the receipt of work applications, the allotment of
work, and the payment of unemployment allowance
• Is the gender quota being satisfied in the allotment of work
• Is the roster based on date of application received being followed for the allocation of work
• Are those who are allocated work outside the five km radius being given extra payment
equal to 10 % of the minimum wage
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d) Transparency in the sanction of work

• Was the shelf of projects prepared in the Gram sabha


• Was the technical estimate prepared by the Junior Engineer along with the residents of the
village
• Were the works sanctioned from the shelf of projects as per norms?
• A list of all the EGA works sanctioned in the six month period must be read out aloud,
along with amount sanctioned, and amount spent on the works. This list must include
works sanctioned from both the panchayat/ and non panchayat list which were undertaken
within the ward/ gram panchayat
• Has the Panchayat board been updated with the list of works painted on it (see format)

e) Transparency in the implementation of work

• Was there a board on the work site giving details of sanctioned amount, work dimensions,
and other requisite details (see format)
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• Was an open transparency meeting held before commencement of the work to explain
the work requirements to the workers, including the labour and material estimates as per
the technical sanction (see simplified format)
• Were the muster rolls available for public scrutiny at all times at the work site
• Was there a work site material register (see format) maintained, along with verification by
at least five workers whenever material came to the site
• Was a daily individual measurement of work conducted in a transparent manner where
piece rate norms were in force
• Was the measurement of the work done by the junior engineer in the presence of a group
of workers
• Did members of the vigilance committee make regular visits to the work site, and monitor
the implementation of various aspects of the work
• Were any complaints made? Were they addressed within seven days by the grievance
redressal authority as specified in the guidelines
• Was an open transparency meeting held within seven days of the completion of the
work, where all those who worked on the site, and residents of the village where the work
took place are invited to look at the entire records. Compliance of the requirement to hold
this meeting must be made necessary before the completion certificate is issued
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f) Making of wage Payments

• Were wages paid within seven days


• Were wages paid at a designated public place at a designated time
• Were all payment details available for public scrutiny before the payments
• Were made (through putting up muster roll copies on notice boards etc)
• Were payment details read out aloud in public while making payments
• Were payments made by an agency other than the one implementing the work
• Was a record maintained of payments made beyond the specified time limit
• Was compensation given as per the provision of the payment of wages act for late
payments
• Are there any wage payments which are still due

g) Post Facto auditing of the records and accounts of each work undertaken

• Does the file have all the documents required (see file check list and format)
• Were all the documents available for scrutiny atleast 15 days before the social audit
meeting
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• Were charts prepared of the summary sheets for public display and scrutiny before and
during the social audit
• The muster roll summary must be read out aloud to check for discrepancies(see format)
• The summary of the bills must be read out aloud to check for discrepancies (see format)
• The measurement book summary (see format) must be read out aloud
• The photographs taken, before, during, and after the work must be available for public
display and scrutiny during the social audit
• Was the vigilance committee formed as per norms
• Has the vigilance committee submitted its report (see format)
• The report of at least the following aspects of the vigilance committee and its findings
should be read out and form the basis of discussion in the ward/gram sabha- a) quality of
work b) work dimensions c) selection of location d) were minimum wages paid e) were
wages paid on time f) have all bill payments been made g) were there any complaints
made to them during the work h) what redressal took place for complaints or grievances. i)
were the work site facilities made available j) what are the maintenance requirements of
the project

h) Other general issues connected with EGA works


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• There must be an action taken report prepared by the programme office on the resolutions
and findings of the last social audit read out aloud at the beginning of each meeting
• Are there any general maintenance issues to be looked at related to development works in
the panchayat
• Has the last financial audit report been submitted? It should be made available to the
social audit manch, and audit objections if any should be read out aloud
• Any UCs or CCs issued since the last social audit should be read out aloud
• Are there any persons with outstanding wages or unemployment allowance to be paid?
These should be listed and reported to the programme office for necessary action
• Are all the boards in the panchayat updated as per requirements.
• The services of the EGA staff like the Panchayat Rozgar sevak, and the junior engineer, and
any other staff, need to be audited for quality of service.
• The timely flow of funds from the programme office to the gram panchayat needs to be
monitored
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THE PROCEDURE FOR CONDUCTING


A MODEL SOCIAL AUDIT
Notice
Publicising
Quorum (category wise)
Minutes (as per format)
Chairing the session
Presenting the information
Keeping minutes
Mode of decision making- vote, consensus, dissent

CHAPTER VII

SOCIAL AUDITING
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A TRAINING MODULE
7.1 Objective:

The objective of this training module is to equip government servants, representatives of


people’s movements and NGOs, and members of local communities to conduct social audits
for a variety of programmes and schemes.

7.2 Methodology:
This is a “hands-on” training module where theoretical knowledge and simulation is
supplemented by being involved in the actual process of social auditing. Consequently, only
those who are both trainers and practitioners of social auditing can impart the training
described in this module. The module complements the manual on social auditing that has
been prepared by the Centre for Equity Studies and MKSS, with the support of the NIRD. This
module is designed for a seven-day training programme.

Note: The details of the training module would have to be modified depending on the scheme being audited and the
details of the area and community involved in the social audit.
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7.3 Training Schedule:

First day
Half day

1. Introduction to the concept of a social audit


2. Contrast it with other types of audits.
3. Discuss advantages and constraints of social audits.
4. Describe the history of social auditing.
5. Introduce case studies and show films.
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Half day

6. Introduce the participants to the social audit manual.


7. Explain the steps of social auditing.
8. Describe, in detail, how each step is to be carried out.
9. Introduce the problems that can be faced in each step.
10. Do a mock social audit by dividing up the participants into groups.

Second day
Half day

11. Continue a mock social audit.

Half day

12. Make preparations for participating in a social audit.


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a.Get acquainted, in detail, with the scheme to be audited and with the Right to
Information Act 2005.
b. Make sure that all the forms and documents are in simple, easily understandable,
language and structure and available in local languages.
c.Prepare/have prepared charts and boards with all the relevant information.
Third day
First half

13. Participate in a genuine social audit exercise – go out into the community and:
a.Make people aware of their rights, entitlements and obligations under the
scheme/programme being audited.
b. Specifically, make them aware of their right to participate in the ongoing process of
social audit.
Third and fourth days
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One and a half days

14. Get involved in the conduct of a social audit (along with the PRI or the government
department responsible), specifically:
a.Ensure that all relevant information is publicly displayed on boards and through
posters and is also read out at appropriate times for the convenience of the people,
especially those who cannot read.
b. Ensure that the decision making process, especially for those decisions that are
critical and/or vulnerable to distortions, is transparent and open and carried out, as far
as possible, in the presence of the affected persons.
c.Make certain that all decisions, along with reasons, as appropriate, are also
communicated as soon as they are made to the affected people, and in manner that
makes it easy for them to comprehend.
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d. Where there is a need for measuring, inspection or certification, ensure that


randomly selected individuals, from among the affected persons, are involved on a
rotational basis.
e.Ensure that members of the public and especially those directly affected, are
facilitated to inspect and verify records, inspect works and generally monitor planning
and implementation.
Fifth day

15. Prepare for the conduct of a public hearing (a jan audit manch).
a.Compile all the relevant information and reduce it to easily understandable formats.
b. Inform all the community members about the time and location of the jan audit manch.
c. Prepare the posters and banners required for the jan audit manch.
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d. Identify the key speakers and draw up a programme.


e.Allocate responsibilities.
f. Go over, in detail, the process and method of conducting a jan audit manch.
Sixth day

16. Participate in the conduct of the jan audit manch.

Seventh day

17. Debriefing session. Revisit the theory of social audits and have a detailed discussion to
address the questions that the participants might have.
18. Valedictory and farewell

Annexure - I
Preparatory Check List for Mass Social Audit
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1st Phase

1. Commitment from Local Group

In Dungarpur Commitment of People was taken in a Sammelan on the 3rd in Feb 06. That the
local organizations would mobilize 400 people to walk the whole district with the Padyatra.
Their commitment was to :

i. Time -10 Days.


ii. Without remuneration – local Volunteers.
iii. 10 person for group + organisers local 400 per district (approximately)
iv. Matched by equal number from outside- both to get trained and ontribute

2. Talked to the Administration-Collector Dungarpur. The Administration gave a


commitment to provide

i) Photocopies of who completed (EGA).


ii) Photocopies of on going works. Panchayat / Department wise with
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specification of labour/ work , with copies of the various sanctions.


iii) Fulfill Obligations for transparency

3. Map of the District

Divided no of Panchayats, by no of teams. This gave us the estimated number of days


required for the Padyatra @ 1 day per panchayat.

2nd Phase

Once Commitment on all the above were made by the administration: the Coordination team
was set up with members from different organizations. A Working group was also set up.

Three sets of meetings / trainings were organised


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1. 1 day play meeting with core tam in Devdungri was held in late February. This
meeting was to facilitate requirements (Physical) budget, strategies, categories required
to be trained Drama training.
2. Training of Trainers
1. Specialist in oratory
2. Filling of social audit forms / questionnaires
3. Communication.
4. Local leaders.
5. Women’s Issues.
6 Familiarity with RTI and social audit
processes .

Collector Dungarpur was invited to attend this meeting and give the district perspective
so that the commitments were renewed by the District Administration . It also facilitated
the people to table genuine problems before the collector to start a dialogue to enable the
implementation of the NREGA.

3. The Budget that was approved was circulated with an appeal letter drafted for the
purpose and receipt books printed were distributed for collection .
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4. Invitations asking for dates , and for numbers of days people were willing to commit
themselves.
5. Material Preparation list

i. 3 bannners to a team (content of banners accepted democratically at the trainers


training )
ii. History of NREGA – to settle claims and counter claims
iii. Social Audit format.
iv. Check list ( very long for what need to be done reg—eah group appended) .. …
v. ipkZ on Why Social Audit.
vi. NREGA in India– full information…………
vii. ipkZ for general invitation, local.
viii. Flags , placards.
ix. Mobile mike one per team.
x. Dholak + local instruments.
xi. Donation boxes (1 to a team).
xii. Receipt books.
xiii. ipkZ one on RTI, one on NREGA.
xiv. Copies of RTI & NREGA Acts for sale.
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xv. Application form.


1. RTI
2. for jobs in NREGA works
xvi. Bags with slogans.
xvii. Badges.
xviii. Background press format one in English- one in local lang. for filing daily .
xix. Guide lines NREGA
xx. Banners for Sammelan ‘s in District HQ.

7 Venue for initial 2 day mass exposure to NREGA Rules.

8 accommodation required for outside participants

9 food during 2 day mass exposure + 1 day convention , concluding


session plus donation from local citizenry.

10 videography

11 registration forms plus fees


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12 BSR measurement chart with norms

13 Coordination Office , its requirements


• two computers
• printer
• fax machine
• telephones
• other office equipment that may be needed

14. Vehicles required, people allowed use of vehicle, in some cases Campaign paid for the
diesel and in others the organization bore the expenses. There was one vehicle per block, one
for the coordinarion office and trucks were organiswed to drop people at their pad yatra
points from where the yatras were about to begin.
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15 The Administration established its own Control Room s at the District, Block levels from
where they dealt with arrangements as well as attended to complaints and grievances and
addressed them on a priority basis.

16 Designed special forms for survey

17 At the Block level there were

• emergency phone numbers given to each team


• jeeps and other vehicles were organized by organizations in the area to fetch sick people
and to gather the daily press notes and reports

18 The Administration took responsibility for

• transparency provisions , including fulfillment of all obligations under the NREGA


• boards at work sites and wherever else necessary
• instructions to the sarpanch to be present in the panchayat area
• the gram sewak to be present with all staff at the time of the visit of the padyatra
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• facilitate all imformation access

Mistakes and learning


Should have had
1. Cycle teams in each block to support the padyatris also to bring press notes and other
information and a report on whether some specific important provisions were fulfilled or not.
2. Block level Sub coordination units.
3. Researchers and trainers for filing in survey forms needed at least a full
days orientation and intensive training , ours was inadequate

GROUPS AND THEIR ACTIVITIES AND RESPONSIBILITIES

1. Group Coordinator / Standby was to be a responsible person, either local or outsider,


confident about the area and NREGA background, with ability to converse in the local
language.
2. One / two responsible for for preperation of the daily press note
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3. One / two responsible for filing social audit forms ( fully conversant and prior trained )
4. communicators- with one coordinator
• oration
• plays
• slogans
• singing special songs
• talking to people

5. mike incharge
6. meeting co-ordinator with an easy facility with the mike
7. daily reporting for the document to be produced on the pad yatra- stories, factual data
other than those in the forms, problems people face, touching incidents, happenings et all.
8. Petitions and complaints to be written – 1 or 2 local people to take responsibility .
9. One person to sell materials
10. One to collect donation
11. One to maintain accounts
12. One to distribute pamphlets
13. organize wall painting of slogans
14. One to administer medical first aid from kit provided
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15. to maintain emergency rations etc

Every Yatri should have

1. Torch
2. Water Bottle
3. Lota
4. Sheet
5. Mosquito repellant ( if required)

NON NEGOTIABLES

1. To eat one per household


2. Eat whatever is given by the family, normal every day food
3. No liquor to be consumed while on the yatra
4. No untouchability or discrimination on the basis of caste gender or religion will be
condoned.
5. Sleep in a common place - school building etc -all yatris together.
6. Daily review meeting
266

7. No special privileges to anyone.


8. No special favours from the Sarpanch or any official or public representative who is
connected with the implementation of the programme.

C. DRAFT SOCIAL AUDIT (TRANSPARENCY AND ACCOUNTABILITY) RULES

Registration for Job Card

1. A special Gram Sabha shall be convened at the commencement of the NREGA in a


District. The purpose of the Gram Sabha shall be to explain the provisions of the Act, and
mobilize applications for registration. A door-to-door survey to identify households shall
precede this special Gram Sabha. Registration forms shall be made available at the Gram
Sabha and registration will begin on the spot.
2. At the conclusion of the Gram Sabha details of households registered till then shall be
read out.
3. A list of registered households shall be maintained and kept open for inspection at the
Gram Panchayat office. The list shall be updated every three months.
4. Registration shall remain open through out the year at the Gram Panchayat office.
267

5. The application for registration must be accepted at the Gram Panchayat. Photocopies
of the form shall also be accepted.
6. An individual may appear personally and make an oral request for registration. The
Gram Panchayat Secretary shall extend reasonable assistance to the applicant in filling out
the form.
7. A dated and signed receipt shall be provided to the applicant at the time of receiving
the application.

Application for Work and Work Allotment


8. Job Card holders may apply for work in person or by post to the Gram Panchayat or the
Programme Officer.
9. A dated and signed receipt shall be provided to the applicant at the time of receiving
the application.
10. An application for work can be made on the prescribed form (Form A-2) and can also
be submitted on plain paper. A single application may be given for different periods during
the year. The application must contain the following particulars:
a.Name of the applicant
b. Job Card number
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c.Number of days of work sought


d. When the applicant would like to commence work.
e.Date of application
11. Failure to accept an application and to issue a dated receipt shall be considered a
contravention of the Act and action shall be initiated under section 23 and 25 of the act.
12. Complaints for such failure will be made to the Program Officer. Such complaints shall
be disposed of within seven days of receipt under section 23 (6) of the Act.
13. All applications for work shall be entered in the Application Register to be maintained
at the Gram Panchayat office. This register shall be open to public for inspection.
14. Copies of all work orders shall be put on display at Gram Panchayat notice board(s) at
the time of commencement of the work.
15. An Employment Register, updated from the Muster Rolls as per the prescribed format
shall be available at the Gram Panchayat and kept open for public inspection.
16. A specific day shall be fixed to disseminate information about the NREGA every month.
This day may be called 'Rozgar divas'. The following activities shall be carried out on
Rozgar Divas:
a.During the Rozgar Divas meeting the names and other details of all those who have
been registered, or given Job Cards, or allotted work, or paid wages, or given
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unemployment allowance, during the month, shall be read out and also publicly
displayed. (See Format- B-3)
b. The meetings shall also be used to explain the details of the scheme including the
entitlements and obligations, the norms and procedures.
c.The Rozgar Divas may also be used by any person to seek any information, or
scrutinize any documents, or raise any issue, or lodge any complaint, regarding any
aspect of the functioning of the NREGA in the Gram Panchayat.

Peoples Participation in Planning


17. The Programme Officer shall ensure that the Gram Panchayat prepares a shelf of
possible works to be taken up within the Gram Panchayat, with works listed in order of
priority as agreed in the Gram Sabha. The prioritized list must also be displayed at the
Gram Panchayat office.
18. The technical estimates/work sanctions shall be summarized and estimated quantum
of material required will be indicated in local language and units for supply of material
(prescribed Format C-1).
19. Prior to commencement of work, common language estimates of the technical
estimates/work sanctions shall be displayed on the work site board (Format C-2).
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Muster Rolls

1. The Programme Officer shall be responsible for issuing uniquely numbered muster rolls
(Format D-1) to the implementing agencies.
2. The names of all workers assigned to a worksite shall be recorded on the muster roll by
the worksite supervisor (mate) on the day the workers report for work.
3. Daily attendance of the workers will be recorded on the said muster rolls.
4. Once completed the muster rolls will be placed in the Work File and kept available for
public inspection at the office of the implementing agency.
5. All workers shall bring their Job Cards (format E-1) when they report for work. The worksite
supervisor (mate) shall make an entry in the Job Card on the first and last day of the work
period, indicating the dates of the first and last day of work respectively, and the total
number of days worked during that period.
6. At the end of the work period, the supervisor (mate) shall update the Consolidation Sheet
(format D-2).
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Participation in Supervision and Measurement of Works

20. Every Work Site Supervisor (Mate) shall maintain a Work Site File containing the
following:
a.Muster Roll (Format D1)
b. Muster Roll Consolidation Sheet (Format D2)
c.Stock Register (Format D3)
d. Summary of measurements taken while work is in progress (Format D4)
e.Copy of Technical Estimates (Format D5)
f. Copy of Work Sanctions (Technical, Financial and Administrative Sanctions) (Format
D6)
g. Copy of the Work Order
h. Vigilance Committee Inspection Reports (format D7)

21. Work Site File shall be open for inspection. Work Site File shall be kept at the work site
during working hours. The Gram Panchayat Secretary will be responsible for ensuring that
the Work Site File is properly maintained by the Work Site Supervisor (Mate).
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22. Sample of materials can be taken from the worksite of an ongoing work or completed
work on submission of application. The applicant shall receive the sample at a pre-
designated time in her or his presence. It shall be sealed and certified by an official
designated by the Assistant Engineer of the concerned department.

Disbursement of Full Wages on Time


23. Wage Payments shall be made by an agency independent of the implementing agency.
The official disbursing the money shall sign on the Pay Order/Muster Roll that the
payments were made in her/his presence. The Pay Order shall be read out before payment
and displayed at Gram Panchayat on completion of payment. Payment should be publicly
made to all workers at a public place. Payment details shall also be recorded by the
disbursing officer in the workers’ Job Cards at the time of making payments.
24. Disclosure of piece rate measurement shall be made individually and not en masse so
as to provide each worker with his/her due exactly.

Accountability in Disposal of Complaints


273

25. Complaints relating to violations of the NREGA or associated Guidelines and Rules by
the Gram Panchayat shall be lodged in writing with the Programme Officer who shall be an
officer not below the rank of the block development officer holding independent charge. In
cases where complaints are related to any authority other than the Gram Panchayat, the
complaints shall be lodged with the District Programme Coordinator. Complaints received
by the Programme Officer or District Programme Coordinator shall be entered in the
Complaints Register (Format XYZ).
26. Irrespective of the authority with whom the complaints are lodged, the official
concerned (Programme Officer or District Programme Coordinator) shall dispose of the
matter in seven days as prescribed under section 23(6) of the Act.
27. Any reported contravention of Social Audit (Transparency and Accountability) Rules
shall be deemed to be a complaint in terms of section 23(6) and be disposed of within
seven days of receipt by the Programme Officer and/or District Programme Coordinator.
Appeals by the complainants against these orders will lie with the Divisional
Commissioner.

28. Failure to dispose of a complaint in seven days will be considered to be a contravention


of the Act on the part of the concerned officer, punishable under section 25. Appeals
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against such failure will be lodged with the Divisional Commissioner or the Employment
Guarantee Commissioner as decided by the State Government (Format XYZ).
29. In the event where a contravention of the Act, Guidelines or Rules comes to the
attention of the Programme Officer or District Programme Coordinator, based on a
complaint or otherwise, the Programme Officer or District Programme Coordinator shall
recommend a fine to be levied against the concerned official by the Divisional
Commissioner/State Employment Guarantee Commissioner under Section 25 of the
NREGA.
30. The Divisional Commissioner/State Employment Guarantee Commissioner shall be
responsible for disposing of appeals made by complainants and ‘references’ made by the
Programme Officers or District Programme Coordinators.
31. Based on a ‘reference’ the Divisional Commissioner/State Employment Guarantee
Commissioner shall issue a charge sheet and give an opportunity for a hearing to the
official concerned. All references shall be disposed off within one month.
32. While disposing off an appeal the the Divisional Commisioner/ State Employment
Guarantee Commisioner shall give an opportunity to be heard to both the complainant and
the official against whom the complaint is being made. All appeals shall be disposed off
within one month.
275

33. While disposing off any ‘references’ or appeals the Divisional Commisioner/ State
Employment Guarantee Commisioner shall convict any official found guilty of
contravention of the Act under section 25 of the NREGA, and impose a fine which may
extend to Rs. 1,000. All fines shall be deducted from the officials salary.

Rules for Social Audit Forum

34. Every
Gram Panchayat shall organize a Social Audit Forum (hereinafter forum) at least
once every six months as prescribed under section 17 (2) of the Act.
35. This forum shall serve as a platform for members of the Gram Sabha to review and
verify financial expenditure, examine the provisions of entitlements, discuss the priorities
reflected in choices made and evaluate the quality of works and services, record social
audit objections, pass resolutions and take up any mater related to the implementation of
the NREGA.
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Announcement of Social Audit Forum

36. The date, time, agenda of the Forum shall be widely publicized so as to ensure
maximum participation. . The Program Officer shall ensure that the Gram Panchayat:

a.Provide a month's advance notice of the date of the Forum, and maintain an annual
schedule in terms of the months in which these are to be held.
b. Use both traditional modes of publicity (such as informing people through the
beating of drums) as well as modern means of communication (such as
announcements on microphones) to publicize date and time of the Forum.
c.Circulate announcements of the date, time, and agenda of the forum through notices
on notice boards, through newspapers and pamphlets, etc.

Preparation of Documents

37. The Gram Panchayat Secretary shall be responsible for providing the consolidation of
Muster Rolls and Bills, which must be prepared in advance for presentation at the Social
277

Audit Forum. These consolidation sheets shall be displayed at the Gram Panchayat office
during the preceding 15 days and at the Forum.
38. The GP Secretary shall be responsible for preparing a 'checklist report' as per the
checklist contained in the NREGA guidelines (Social Audit Forum: Mandatory Agenda). The
report must address all the questions in this checklist as per the prescribed format. This
report shall be displayed in the Gram Panchayat office fifteen days in advance along with
other documents. (Format E-1)
39. All the relevant documents, including complete files of the works or copies of them, the
annual audit report, and any registers, inspection reports, orders, or correspondence shall
be made available for inspection at the Gram Panchayat office at least 15 days in advance
of the Forum.
40. There shall be free and easy access to these documents for all residents of the Gram
Panchayat during this period. Copies of the documents should be provided at cost price, on
demand, within one week of the request being made.
41. The files containing records in original shall be made available on the day of the Social
Audit for verification during the forum.

42. The works/programmes to be taken up for audit should be listed in advance, and the
list should be put up on the notice boards, along with the other items on the agenda.
278

Procedural Aspects

43. The timing of the Forum shall be convenient for people (both men and women) to
attend.
44. The quorum of the Forum must be the same as for all Gram Sabhas, with the quorum
being applied separately to all relevant categories (e.g. women, SC, ST and OBCs).
45. Lack of a quorum shall not be taken as a reason for not recording queries and
complaints; social audit objections shall be recorded at any time during the Forum.
46. The Social Audit forum shall be chaired by an official from outside the Panchayat; its
Secretary must also be an individual from outside the Gram Panchayat. The District
Program coordinator shall be responsible for designating such officials as chairpersons and
secretaries of the forum.
47. Works to be taken up for social audit shall be examined one at a time and the
consolidated sheet of the Muster Rolls and material shall be read aloud.
48. The person responsible for presenting the information shall not be a person involved in
implementing the work. The vigilance committee members, or a schoolteacher, or village
279

social audit volunteers for instance, could be considered for the purpose of reading aloud
the information as per the required format.
49. All officials responsible for implementation of the works/programmes being taken up
for social audit shall be required to be present at the Social Audit Forum to answer queries
from members of the Gram Sabha. The Gram Panchayat Secretary shall be responsible for
ensuring that the officials are informed at least seven days in advance of the forum.
50. Decisions and resolutions shall be made by vote, but dissenting opinions must be
recorded and treated as a social audit objection.
51. The secretary of the Forum shall record minutes as per the prescribed existing format,
and the minutes register must be signed by all participants at the beginning and at the
conclusion of the meeting (after the minutes have been written).
52. The 'checklist report' of the Gram Panchayat Secretary must be taken up for discussion
during the forum. All objections to the "check list report" must be recorded and shall be
treated as a complaint under section 23 of the act. (Format)
53. During the Social Audit Forum, the Right to Information Act and social audit manuals
should be publicized so that the Forum serves as an ongoing training ground for the public
vigilance process.
280

54. ‘Mandatory Agenda’ refers to the minimum agenda of every Social Audit conducted by
the Gram Sabha enumerated in the NREGA guidelines. The checklist will help in reviewing
whether the norms and provisions in the Act, Rules and Guidelines are being observed.

Action taken

55. The Gram Panchayat Secretary shall be responsible for preparing a Social Audit Report
after each Social Audit Forum and submitting it to the Programme Officer within one week.
This Report shall contain a record of minutes of the Forum, any resolutions passed by the
Forum (Social Audit Resolutions), and any objections raised (Social Audit Objections).
56. Any objection raised at the Social Audit Forum by an individual or a group of individuals
relating to failure to meet the requirements of the NREGA shall be called a 'social audit
objection'.
57. All social audit objections shall be treated as a complaint under section 23 of the
NREGA, and sent to the program officer for disposal within one week of receipt of the
Social Audit Report.
58. Any resolution passed by the Social Audit Forum shall be called a 'Social Audit
Resolution.' The quorum of the forum must be complete in order for there to be legitimate
Social Audit Resolution.
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59. All social audit resolutions related to corruption shall be treated as a preliminary
enquiry, and the district programme coordinator shall be responsible for ensuring that a
detailed enquiry is held, and that first information reports are filed where necessary.
60. The Programme Officer shall be responsible for addressing all issues contained in the
resolutions and for preparing an 'action taken report' within 30 days of receipt of the
Social Audit Report.
61. The ‘action taken report’ relating to the previous Social Audit Forum shall be read out
at the beginning of each Social Audit Forum.
62. In addition, the State Government could designate people with technical expertise
(engineers and accountants) from outside the District as special observers, to help ensure
that information has been prepared for dissemination as per the required formats, see that
the social audit forums are being held, attend selected Social Audit Forums and send their
observation reports to the Employment Guarantee Commissioner of the State, and the
State Employment Guarantee Council.
63. Immediately after attending such Forums, they could visit the worksites and conduct
enquiries in cases where people have raised social audit objections or testified that there
is corruption.
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64. The reports of the Social Audit Forum, and the reports of the technical team, shall be
submitted to the Programme Officer and the District Programme coordinator within a week
for necessary action.

65. The gram panchayat secretary shall be responsible for submitting both the preceeding
six monthly reports of the social audit forum, the related action taken reports, as well as
reports of the technical teams if any, to the auditor at the time of the annual audit of the
gram panchayat. The auditor shall examine these reports and take the reports into
consideration while conducting the annual audit.

D. NREGA: A SUMMARY

The National Rural Employment Guarantee Act 2005 is a law whereby any adult who
is willing to do unskilled manual work at the minimum wage is entitled to being
employed on public works within 15 days of applying. If work is not provided within
15 days, he/she is entitled to an unemployment allowance. The key features of the
Act are spelt out below.
283

Salient Features of the National Rural Employment Guarantee Act

1. Eligibility: Any person who is above the age of 18 and resides in rural areas is entitled to
apply for work.
2. Entitlement: Any applicant is entitled to work within 15 days, for as many days as he/she
has applied, subject to a limit of 100 days per household per year.
3. Distance: Work is to be provided within a radius of 5 kilometres of the applicant’s
residence if possible, and in any case within the Block. If work is provided beyond 5
kilometres, travel allowances have to be paid.
4. Wages: Workers are entitled to the statutory minimum wage applicable to agricultural
labourers in the state, unless and until the Central Government “notifies” a different wage
rate. If the Central Government notifies, the wage rate is subject to a minimum of Rs
60/day.
5. Timely payment: Workers are to be paid weekly, or in any case not later than a fortnight.
Payment of wages is to be made directly to the person concerned in the presence of
independent persons of the community on pre-announced dates.
6. Unemployment allowance: If work is not provided within 15 days, applicants are entitled
to an unemployment allowance: one third of the wage rate for the first thirty days, and one
half thereafter.
284

7. Worksite facilities: Labourers are entitled to various facilities at the worksite such as
clean drinking water, shade for periods of rest, emergency health care, and child-minding.

EMPLOYMENT GUARANTEE SCHEME

1. Employment Guarantee Scheme: Each state government has to put in place an


“Employment Guarantee Scheme” within six months of the Act coming into force.
2. Permissible works: A list of permissible works is given in Schedule I of the Act. These are
concerned mainly with water conservation, minor irrigation, land development, rural roads,
etc. However, the Schedule also allows “any other work which may be notified by the
Central Government in consultation with the State Government”.
3. Programme Officer: The Employment Guarantee Scheme is to be coordinated at the
Block level by a “Programme Officer”. However, the Act allows some of his/her
responsibilities to be delegated to the Gram Panchayats.
4. Implementing agencies: EGS works are to be executed by “implementing agencies”.
These include, first and foremost, the Gram Panchayats (they are supposed to implement
half of the EGS works), but implementing agencies may also include other Panchayati Raj
285

Institutions, line departments such as the Public Works Department or Forest Department,
and NGOs.
5. Contractors: Private contractors are banned.
6. Decentralised planning: A shelf of projects is to be maintained by the Programme
Officer, based on proposals from the implementing agencies. Each Gram Panchayat is also
supposed to prepare a shelf of works based on the recommendations of the Gram Sabha.
7. Transparency and accountability: The Act includes various provisions for transparency
and accountability, such as regular social audits by the Gram Sabhas, mandatory disclosure
of muster rolls, public accessibility of all EGS documents, regular maintenance of job cards,
etc.

OTHER PROVISIONS
1. Participation of women: Priority is to be given to women in the allocation of work, “in
such a way that at least one-third of the beneficiaries shall be women”.
2. Penalties: The Act states that “whoever contravenes the provisions of this Act shall on
conviction be liable to a fine which may extend to one thousand rupees”.
3. State Council: The implementation of the Act is to be monitored by a “State Employment
Guarantee Council”.
286

4. Cost sharing: The Central Government has to pay for labour costs and 75% of the material
costs. State governments have to pay the unemployment allowance and 25% of the
material costs.
5. Time frame: The Act will come into force initially in 200 districts, and is to be extended to
the whole of rural India within five years.

Annexure - II
INTEGRATING SOCIAL AUDITING INTO THE
PRADHAN MANTRY GRAM SARAK YOJANA (PRIME MINISTER’S RURAL
ROADS PLAN)

A. INTRODUCTION

“The primary objective of the PMGSY is to provide Connectivity, by way of an All-weather Road
(with necessary culverts and cross-drainage structures, which is operable throughout the
287

year), to the eligible unconnected Habitations in the rural areas, in such a way that all
Unconnected Habitations with a population of 1000 persons and above are covered in three
years (2000-2003) and all Unconnected Habitations with a population of 500 persons and
above by the end of the Tenth Plan Period (2007). In respect of the Hill States (North-East,
Sikkim, Himachal Pradesh, Jammu & Kashmir, Uttaranchal) and the Desert Areas (as identified
in the Desert Development Programme) as well as the Tribal (Schedule V) areas, the objective
would be to connect Habitations with a population of 250 persons and above.” (PMGSY
Schemes and Guidelines - Website ).

With the launching of the PMGSY, the Government of India has initiated an ambitious plan
to drastically increase rural connectivity across the country.

An analysis of the functioning of the PMGSY suggests that there are various vulnerabilities
which, if not adequately addressed, would not only significantly lessen the benefits of the
programme but, in some cases, might even result is there being more harm than good done. It
is almost impossible to effectively address these weaknesses without involving the various
stakeholders in a meaningful way right from the planning stage,.
288

In order to ensure that such a meaningful involvement of the potential beneficiaries and
other stakeholders gets institutionalised, this manual describes the various steps that need
to be taken by the people and their groups and organisations to ensure transparency and
accountability by the government, the Panchayati Raj institutions and other implementing
agencies. The focus is on integrating people’s participation in the planning and auditing
process of the PMGSY.

B. INTEGRATING SOCIAL AUDITING INTO PMGSY

The PMGSY is planned and implemented in various stages. Some of the critical milestones
include:

1. The identification of the link.


2. The alignment of the road.
3. The assessment of environmental impacts.
4. The assessment of social and economic impacts.
5. The awarding of contracts/ giving work orders.
6. The construction of the road –
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a.implementing agencies.
b. employment of labour.
c.following of specifications.
d. quality control.
e.controlling of adverse environmental impacts.
f. controlling adverse social impacts.
g. keeping to time lines.
7. The Evaluation of the road.
8. Maintenance of the road.

In order to ensure that at each stage there is a proper involvement of stakeholders, the
process of social audits needs to be integrated and institutionalised in the process of planning,
implementation, monitoring and evaluation of the programme to ensure full transparency and
participation of all stakeholders. These measures, as they correspond to each specific aspect
and stage, are listed below. Also listed are the potential vulnerabilities and what needs to be
done in order to ensure stakeholder involvement and scrutiny.
290

S STAGE/M VULNERABILITIES TRANSPARENCY AND SOCIAL


n. ILESTON AUDIT MEASURES TO BE
E INITIATED BY THE GOVERNMENT
(With suggested action by the
people in bold italics)
1 The 1. Identifying a 1.The process of identifying a link is
. identificati non-eligible link. required to be transparent. The
on of the 2. Identifying a process must be carried out
link. low priority link. publicly, with people of the area,
3. Identifying a specifically of the villages that
link serving have potential eligible links.
political/private 2.Before finalisation of the links in
rather than social any block, a public meeting must
objectives. be organised where people from
4. According all the villages in the block can
inappropriate participate and question the
priorities to the proposed identification and
291

identified links. selection. The concerned


authorities must be able to
answer these questions and to
record the questions/objections
and the response and put them in
the public domain.
The people must attend all such
public meetings in large
numbers and be vigilant. They
must carefully observe the
process to ensure that no
ineligible or inappropriate links
are being proposed.

Where an eligible/priority link is


not being taken up, the people
must always be ready to
intercede and question the
concerned functionaries on why
these eligible/ priority links are
292

being ignored. Where the


concerned functionaries are not
co-operative, the people must
jointly complain to the relevant
authority.

3. A prior survey has to be


conducted by the concerned
department to identify and
describe all the eligible links, and
to prioritise them according to
accepted criteria. This is the basis
for ensuring that all the eligible
links are identified and prioritised.
4. A social and environmental
impact statement should be
developed for at least three of the
best alignments. This should be
conducted in a transparent and
participative manner, with the full
293

involvement of the local people.


5. This enumeration is also
supposed to help in preventing
the listing of fictitious, ineligible,
or inappropriate links.
The local people should fully
participate in the conduct of the
social and environmental
impact studies. Where there is
any doubt about any link, the
people should insist on
consulting the report of there
various studies and surveys.
6. Subsequent to the initial studies
and survey and listing, there
must be a public reading in the
block of:
• Lists of all the links considered
during the survey.
• Lists, along with reasons, of
294

links rejected as ineligible or


inappropriate.
• Priority accorded to the
various eligible links, along
with the reason for the
priority.
7. The final list of eligible links, in
order of priority, should be
finalised after
complaints/objections are settled.
Again, the people must attend
all such block meetings in large
numbers and be vigilant. They
must carefully listen to the list
and details of the proposed
links, as they are being read
out, and be ready to raise
objections if any ineligible or
inappropriate links have been
included, or the priorities
295

accorded are wrong.


5. The final list must be put up for
public display at all the Gram
Panchayat offices.
The people must ensure that
this list is put up and also that
it is authentic.
2 The 1. As the land for the 1. The alignment of the road must
. alignment road has to be be finalised in a public meeting
of the donated free by the specifically called for the purpose.
3 road. villagers, the The villagers of the area,
. The alignment could be especially those who live in the
assessme biased towards the proximity of the road or are likely
nt of lands of the weaker to impacted by it, must be
4 environme sections of the invited. There should also be a
. ntal village population. public announcement so that
impacts. 2. The alignment other concerned persons,
The could have other especially non-governmental
assessme significant and experts, could also have an
nt of adverse social opportunity to attend.
296

social and impacts. 2. Copies of the social and


economic 3. The alignment environmental impact
impacts. could be sub- statements, as also the rationale
optimal in terms of for the proposed alignment, must
its utility to the be made available on the web
villagers. and in at least one local office at
4. The alignment least a month before the
could be proposed meeting and along with
unnecessarily the public notice for the meeting.
destructive to the 3. Copies should also be available in
environment. the local language and placed in
5. The alignment the gram panchayat office of
could be each of the villages that are in
unnecessarily long, the locality or otherwise affected.
expensive or 4. During the public meeting, the
difficult to rationale for the alignment as
maintain. also the findings of the social and
environmental impact statements
must be presented in the local
language and questions relating
297

to these or any other aspects of


the link answered.
The people must educate
themselves about the details of
the proposed alignment,
discuss it among themselves in
advance, seek independent
professional help, if required,
and ask the concerned
functionaries to explain the
reasons for the proposed
alignment, as also the ways in
which the social and
environmental impacts will be
prevented or mitigated.
5 The 1. The awarding of 1. As soon as the contract is
. awarding contract to a non- awarded, the details of all the
of eligible contractor. bids, along with the criteria for
contracts/ 2. The awarding of selection and the reasons for
giving contract on the acceptance/rejection of bids
298

work basis of should be put on the web.


orders. political/other 2. The work order, along with the
pressures.. conditions and specifications,
3. The awarding of should also be similarly posted.
contract on the 3. A local language version of all
basis of illegal these should be placed in the
gratification or gram panchayat offices of each of
other illegitimate the concerned/affected villages.
considerations. Insist that details of the bids
4. Exaggerated/ and contracts, including details
inaccurate of the work order are placed in
technical the gram panchayat office.
estimates. Discuss this among yourselves
5. Inclusion, in and take the help of outside
estimate, of experts, if required. If any
unnecessary discrepancies are discovered,
expenditure. file formal complaints and
6. Excessive rates and pursue them with the help of
material. the Right to Information Act,
7. Unclear work order 2005.
299

that does not make 4. Technical estimate has to be


the details of the done with the involvement of the
work clear/leaves local people, and has to be
scope for mis- approved by the gram sabha.
interpretation.
The people must participate in
this exercise and ensure that
the estimates are realistic, that
the rates being quoted are as
per local availability and that
no unnecessary items of
expenditure are being included.
5. The format for the technical
estimate must be simple and
understandable by the people.
6. Similarly, the sanction and work
order format must be people
friendly.
7. This format must be put on public
display so that people can access
300

this information and understand


the details of the work.
The people need to remain
vigilant and check the final
estimate and work order to
ensure that they are in
accordance with what was
collectively decided.
301

6 The
. constructi
on of the 1. Sub-contracting by 1. The details of the authorised
road. the contractor to contractor and any authorised
i. Imple ineligible/inappropr sub-contractors must be
menting iate contractors. prominently displayed, in the
agencie 2. Non-payment of local language, at the work site
s. minimum and in the Gram Panchayat Office
wages/late of the concerned/affected
payment of villages. This should include
ii. Emplo wages/non- photographs along with the name
yment payment of wages. of the main functionaries (mate,
of 3. Non-provision of overseer, JE, foreman, machine
labour. required facilities operator, etc.). Whenevr there is
to the labour. any change in staff, this display
4. Employment of will be updated within the week.
child labour. 2. The muster rolls/salary accounts
5. Not following of the workers must be available
physical at the work site for inspection by
302

specifications. the public, during working hours.


6. Not following 3. A board with details, in local
quality standards, language, of work – estimates
iii. Follow in materials or in and running costs – material,
ing of workmanship/ labour and funds, will be put up at
specific process. every site, and updated regularly.
ations. 7. Not following The format will be user friendly.
iv. Qualit environmental 4. Every week five randomly
y safeguards, selected workers will have to
control. especially in verify and certify all of
excavating fill bills/vouchers of their work site,
material, dumping before they are passed.
overburden and The people must ensure that
v. Contro waste, use of the five workers selected are
lling of water, destruction all reliable and independent
adverse of vegetation, use of the authorities. These five
environ of biomass for fuel, workers must verify all the
mental air, noise and water documents after carefully
impacts pollution, work checking them.
. related health 5. A daily materials-register must be
303

hazards. kept, and verified by five


8. Blockage of randomly selected workers every
access/passage. day.
9. Adverse impacts on The people must ensure that
agricultural fields/ the five workers selected are all
grazing lands. reliable and independent of the
10. Threat to safety, authorities. These five workers
especially of must verify the daily materials
children and register after carefully checking
vi. Contro women. the relevant facts.
lling 11. Impact of influx of 4. The daily/individual measurement
adverse outsiders, records for each work and worker
social especially in must be available for public
impacts remote regions. inspection.
. 12. Avoidable delay This will only be an effective
due to check if people regularly
diversion/insufficie inspect these records and
ncy of labour/ ensure that they are accurate.
machines/ capital
etc. 5. A list of the facilities required by
304

law to be provided to the workers


on site and off site, must also be
put up, in local language, at the
vii. keepin work site and in each gram
g to panchayat office in the area. The
time public will have a right to inspect
lines. these facilities when they are
supposed to be operative, and
the contractor/concerned agency
will facilitate this.
6. The public will also have a right to
observe and interview the labour
working on the project to
determine that they are being
properly treated and paid, and
that there is no discrimination
and no employment of child
labour.
7. As already mentioned, copies, in
local language, of the work order,
305

along with a list of conditions and


specifications, including
environmental and social
conditions, will be kept in each of
the concerned gram panchayat
offices. In addition, these
documents will also be available
at the work site so that the public
can examine them and also
inspect the measures being taken
to meet with the specifications
and conditions. The contractor/
concerned authorities will
facilitate this.
8. Any member of the public can ask
for a sample of the material being
used, or proposed to be used, and
such a sample will have to be
provided as specified in the right
to information act, 2005.
306

9. At each work site a table will be


displayed in the local language
showing the time schedule for
various phases of the work, the
current progress, and reasons for
shortfalls, if any. This must be
updated weekly.
10. A similar table specifying the
workforce (category wise) and
equipment that is required and
that is currently in position will
also be displayed, and reasons
given for variations, if any. This
will also be updated weekly.
The people must insist that
each of these measures is
implemented. They must also
form their own vigilance
committees in the village and
take turns too inspect the work
307

site, examine the displays and


documents, and talk to the
workers, to ensure that
everything is in order. They
should participate fully and
actively in the process and
ensure that the final road link is
according to specifications,
with strict quality control, with
a minimum of adverse social
and environmental impacts, and
where the labour has been
treated well.
7 The 1. Taking and/or 1. Verification of works, for
. Evaluation recording of conformity with work order in
of the improper terms of specifications and
road measurements quality, will be carried out by the
2. Not consolidating concerned Ward/Gram Sabhas.
the information The people must participate in
regarding the the verification and assessment
308

works in one place. exercise, and ensure that the


3. Issuing of false work done conforms to what
completion was commissioned and is of use
certificates to the people.
4. Works not 2. Completion data will be made
conforming to public in a people friendly format.
specifications/ 3. At the completion of a road link, a
standards. comprehensive public hearing will
5. Data recorded in a be held within one month,
confusing/ relating to work at a convenient
Incomprehensible public place, perhaps in the
manner. largest concerned village.
Wherever possible, audio-visual
records of the public hearing will
be maintained. The details of how
to organise a people’s audit
meeting is laid down in the
handbook on people’s audit.
This peoples audit meeting
(Jan Audit Manch) is perhaps
309

the most important element


of the social audit and people
must participate fully in this
and raise issues, without fear
or favour, in order to ensure
that the PMGSY link has been
properly implemented.

8 Maintenan 1.Road has fallen into 1.The agencies responsible for


. ce of the disrepair and maintenance must provide to all
road cannot be used. the concerned gram panchayats
2.Road has become details of their maintenance
dangerous due to schedule, in the local language.
poor maintenance. This must be updated every three
3.The road is having months with details of work
an adverse impact actually done/activities actually
on the surrounding undertaken.
environment 2.Once a year a public meeting
because of poor would be held in each block to
maintenance. discuss the state of maintenance
310

4.The life of the road of the PMGSY roads.


has been severely 3.The concerned villagers would be
curtailed because of invited for this meeting, with at
poor maintenance. least a month’s notice.
4.The concerned agency should
carry out a survey of the state of
the PMGSY roads in that block, in
consultation with the local people,
and present the findings in the
public meeting.
5.People should be encouraged to
share their perceptions both of
the state of the road and the
performance of the agency given
the charge of maintaining the
road.
6.Where contractors/agencies are
found wanting, they should be
penalised and even blacklisted,
where appropriate.
311

The people must gather


evidence regarding the
maintenance activities on the
road, including a record of the
work being done by the
maintenance agencies.

THE PRADHAN MANTRI GRAM SADAK YOJNA (PMGSY):


A SUMMARY

Introduction

Rural Road Connectivity is not only a key component of Rural Development by promoting
access to economic and social services and thereby generating increased agricultural incomes
and productive employment opportunities in India, it is also as a result, a key ingredient in
312

ensuring sustainable poverty reduction. Notwithstanding the efforts made, over the years, at
the State and Central levels, through different Programmes, about 40% of the Habitations in
the country are still not connected by All-weather roads. It is well known that even where
connectivity has been provided, the roads constructed are of such quality (due to poor
construction or maintenance) that they cannot always be categorised as All-weather roads.

With a view to redressing the situation, Government have launched the Pradhan Mantri
Gram Sadak Yojana on 25th December, 2000 to provide all-weather access to unconnected
habitations. The Pradhan Mantri Gram Sadak Yojana (PMGSY) is a 100% Centrally Sponsored
Scheme. 50% of the Cess on High Speed Diesel (HSD) is earmarked for this Programme.

Programme Objectives
The primary objective of the PMGSY is to provide Connectivity, by way of an All-weather Road
(with necessary culverts and cross-drainage structures, which is operable throughout the
year), to the eligible unconnected Habitations in the rural areas, in such a way that all
Unconnected Habitations with a population of 1000 persons and above are covered in three
years (2000-2003) and all Unconnected Habitations with a population of 500 persons and
above by the end of the Tenth Plan Period (2007). In respect of the Hill States (North-East,
313

Sikkim, Himachal Pradesh, Jammu & Kashmir, Uttaranchal) and the Desert Areas (as identified
in the Desert Development Programme) as well as the Tribal (Schedule V) areas, the objective
would be to connect Habitations with a population of 250 persons and above.

The PMGSY will permit the Upgradation (to prescribed standards) of the existing roads in
those Districts where all the eligible Habitations of the designated population size have been
provided all-weather road connectivity. However, it must be noted that Upgradation is not
central to the Programme and cannot exceed 20% of the State’s allocation as long as eligible
Unconnected Habitations in the State still exist. In Upgradation works, priority should be given
to Through Routes of the Rural Core Network, which carry more traffic.

Guiding Principles of PMGSY and Definitions


The spirit and the objective of the Pradhan Mantri Gram Sadak Yojana (PMGSY) is to
provide good all-weather road connectivity to unconnected Habitations. A habitation which
was earlier provided all-weather connectivity would not be eligible even if the present
condition of the road is bad.
314

The unit for this Programme is a Habitation and not a Revenue village or a Panchayat. A
Habitation is a cluster of population, living in an area, the location of which does not change
over time. Desam, Dhanis, Tolas, Majras, Hamlets etc. are commonly used terminology to
describe the Habitations.

An Unconnected Habitation is one with a population of designated size located at a


distance of at least 500 metres or more (1.5 km of path distance in case of Hills) from an All-
weather road or a connected Habitation.

There is a reference above to Population size of Habitations. The population, as recorded in


the Census 2001, shall be the basis for determining the population size of the Habitation. The
population of all Habitations within a radius of 500 metres (1.5 km. of path distance in case of
Hills) may be clubbed together for the purpose of determining the population size. This
cluster approach would enable provision of connectivity to a larger number of Habitations,
particularly in the Hill / mountainous areas.
The eligible Unconnected Habitations are to be connected to nearby Habitations already
connected by an All-weather road or to another existing All-weather road so that services
(educational, health, marketing facilities etc.), which are not available in the unconnected
Habitation, become available to the residents.
315

A Core Network is that minimal Network of roads (routes) that is essential to provide
Basic access to essential social and economic services to all eligible habitations in the selected
areas through at least a single all-weather road connectivity.

A Core Network comprises of Through Routes and Link Routes. Through routes are the
ones which collect traffic from several link roads or a long chain of Habitations and lead it to
Marketing centres either directly or through the higher category roads i.e., the District Roads
or the State or National Highway. Link Routes are the roads connecting a single Habitation or
a group of Habitations to Through Routes or District Roads leading to Market Centres. Link
routes generally have dead ends terminating on a Habitation, while Through Routes arise from
the confluence of two or more Link Routes and emerge on to a major Road or to a Market
Centre.

It should be ensured that each road work that is taken up under the PMGSY is part of the
Core Network. While keeping the objective of Connectivity in view, preference should be given
to those roads which also incidentally serve other Habitations. In other words, without
compromising the basic objective (covering 1000+ Habitations first and 500+ Habitations next
and 250+ Habitations where eligible, last), preference should be given to those roads which
316

serve a larger population. For this purpose, while Habitations within a distance of 500 metres
from the road is considered as connected in case of plain areas, this distance should be 1.5 km
(of path length) in respect of Hills.

The PMGSY shall cover only the rural areas. Urban roads are excluded from the purview of
this Programme. Even in the rural areas, PMGSY covers only the Rural Roads i.e., Roads that
were formerly classified as ‘Other District Roads’ (ODR) and ‘Village Roads’ (VR). Other
District Roads (ODR) are roads serving rural areas of production and providing them with
outlet to market centres, taluka (tehsil) headquarters, Block headquarters or other main roads.
Village Roads (VR) are roads connecting villages / Habitation or groups of Habitation with
each other and to the nearest road of a higher category. Major District Roads, State Highways
and National Highways cannot be covered under the PMGSY, even if they happen to be in rural
areas. This applies to New Connectivity roads as well as Upgradation works.

The PMGSY envisages only single road Connectivity to be provided. If a Habitation is


already connected by way of an All-weather road, then no new work can be taken up under
the PMGSY for that habitation.
317

Provision of connectivity to unconnected Habitations would be termed as New


Connectivity. Since the purpose of PMGSY inter alia is to provide farm to market access, new
connectivity may involve ‘new construction’ where the link to the habitation is missing and
additionally, if required, ‘upgradation’ where an intermediate link in its present condition
cannot function as an all-weather road.

Upgradation, when permitted would typically involve building the base and surface
courses of an existing road to desired technical specifications and / or improving the
geometrics of the road, as required in accordance with traffic condition.

The primary focus of the PMGSY is to provide All-weather road connectivity to the eligible
unconnected Habitations. An All-weather road is one which is negotiable in all seasons of the
year. This implies that the road-bed is drained effectively (by adequate cross-drainage
structures such as culverts, minor bridges and causeways), but this does not necessarily imply
that it should be paved or surfaced or black-topped. Interruptions to traffic as per permitted
frequency and duration may be allowed.
318

There may be roads which are Fair-weather roads. In other words, they are fordable only
during the dry season, because of lack of Cross Drainage (CD) works. Conversion of such roads
to All-weather roads through provision of CD works would be treated as upgradation. It must
be noted that on all the road works of the PMGSY, provision of necessary CD works is
considered an essential element.

PMGSY does not permit repairs to Black-topped or Cement Roads, even if the surface
condition is bad.

The Rural Roads constructed under the Pradhan Mantri Gram Sadak Yojana will be in
accordance with the provision of the Indian Roads Congress (IRC) as given in the Rural Roads
Manual (IRC:SP20:2002). In case of Hill Roads, for matters not covered by the Rural Roads
Manual, provisions of Hills Roads Manual (IRC:SP:48) may apply.

Planning for Rural Roads


Proper planning is imperative to achieve the objectives of the Programme in a systematic
and cost effective manner. The Manual for the Preparation of District Rural Roads Plan and the
319

Core Network, shall be treated as part of the Guidelines and would stand amended to the
extent modified by the present Guidelines. The Manual lays down the various steps in the
planning process and the role of different Agencies including the Intermediate Panchayat, the
District Panchayat as well as the State Level Standing Committee. In the identification of the
Core Network, the priorities of elected representatives, including MPs and MLAs, are expected
to be duly taken into account and given full consideration. The Rural Roads Plan and the Core
Network would constitute the basis for all planning exercises under the PMGSY.

The District Rural Roads Plan would indicate the entire existing road network system in
the District and also clearly identify the proposed roads for providing connectivity to
Unconnected Habitations, in an economic and efficient manner in terms of cost and utility. The
Core Network will identify the roads required to assure each eligible Habitation with a Basic
Access (single all-weather road connectivity) to essential social and economic services.
Accordingly, the Core Network would consist of some of the existing roads as well as all the
roads proposed for new construction under the PMGSY.

In proposing the new links under the District Rural Roads Plan, it would be first necessary
to indicate the weightage for various services. The District Panchayat shall be the competent
authority to select the set of socio-economic / infrastructure variables best suited for the
320

District, categorise them and accord relative weightages to them. This would be
communicated to all concerned before commencing the preparation of the District Rural Roads
Plan.

The Plan would first be prepared at the Block level, in accordance with the directions
contained in the Manual and the priorities spelt out by the District Panchayat. In short, the
existing road network would be drawn up, unconnected Habitations identified and the roads
required to connect these unconnected Habitations prepared. This shall constitute the Block
Level Master Plan.

Once this exercise is completed, the Core Network for the Block is identified, by making
best use of the existing and proposed road facilities in such a manner that all the eligible
Habitations are assured of a Basic access. It must be ensured that every eligible Habitation is
within 500 metres (1.5 km of Path length in the Hills) of a connected Habitation or an All-
weather road (either existing or planned). In drawing up the proposed road links, the
requirements of the people must be taken into account, through the socio-
economic/infrastructure values (Road Index) suitably weighted and the alignment having the
higher Road Index ought to be considered for selection.
321

The Block level Master Plan and the Core Network are then placed before the Intermediate
Panchayat for consideration and approval of the Core Network. They are simultaneously sent,
along with the list of all unconnected Habitations to the Members of Parliament and MLAs, for
their comments, if any. After approval by the Intermediate Panchayat, the Plans would be
placed before the District Panchayat for its approval. It will be incumbent on the District
Panchayat to ensure that the suggestions given by the Members of Parliament are given full
consideration within the framework of these Guidelines. Once approved by the District
Panchayat, a copy of the Core Network would be sent to the State-level Agency as well as the
National Rural Roads Development Agency. No road work may be proposed under the PMGSY
for New Connectivity or Upgradation (where permitted) unless it forms part of the Core
Network.

Funding and Allocation


Once the Core Network is prepared, it is possible to estimate the length of roads for New
Connectivity as well as Upgradation for every District. States may, each year, distribute the
State’s Allocation among the Districts giving 80% on the basis of road length required for
providing connectivity to Unconnected Habitations and 20% on the basis of road length
322

requiring Upgradation under the PMGSY. The District-wise allocation of funds would also be
communicated to the Ministry / NRRDA / and STA every year by the State Government.

In making the District-wise allocation, the road lengths already taken up under the PMGSY
or any other Programme may be excluded (even if the road works are still under execution).
The figures of new construction length will thus keep on changing every year till such time as
all Unconnected Habitations (of the eligible population size) have been covered in the District.

In addition to the allocation to the States, a special allocation of upto 5% of the annual
allocation from the Rural Roads share of the Diesel Cess will be made for:

i. Districts sharing borders with Pakistan and China (in coordination with Ministry of Home
Affairs)
ii. Districts sharing borders with Myanmar, Bangladesh and Nepal (in coordination with
Ministry of Home Affairs)
iii. Left Wing Extremists areas in the Districts identified by the Ministry of Home Affairs
iv. Extremely backward Districts (as identified by the Planning Commission) which can be
categorised as Special Problem Areas
v. Research & Development Projects and innovations.
323

Quality Control and Supervision of Works


Ensuring the quality of the road works is the responsibility of the State Governments, who
are implementing the Programme. To this end, all works will be effectively supervised. The
NRRDA will issue general guidelines on Quality Control and prescribe a Quality Control
Handbook to regulate the quality control process at works level. Quality Control Registers
containing the results of tests prescribed in the Quality Control Handbook shall invariably be
maintained for each of the road works. A site Quality Control Laboratory will be set up by the
Contractor for each package. Payments shall not be made to the Contractor unless the
Laboratory has been duly set up and equipped, quality control tests are regularly conducted,
recorded and have been found to be successful. The Standard Bidding Document shall
incorporate suitable clauses for ensuring Quality Control and a Performance Guarantee by the
Contractor, which should be discharged only after consulting the Panchayati Raj Institutions
responsible for maintenance.
A three-tier Quality Control mechanism is envisaged under the Pradhan Mantri Gram Sadak
Yojana. The State Governments would be responsible for the first two tiers of the Quality
Control Structure. The PIU will be the first tier, whose primary responsibility will be to ensure
that that the all the materials utilised and the workmanship conform to the prescribed
324

specifications. As the first tier, the PIU will supervise the site quality control laboratory to be
set up by the contractor. It shall also ensure that all the tests prescribed are carried out at the
specified time and place by the specified person/ authority.

As the Second tier of the Quality Control structure, periodic inspections of works will be
carried out by Quality Control Units, set up / engaged by the State Government, independent
of the Executive Engineers / PIUs. These officers / Agencies (who may be called State Quality
Monitors) would be expected to carry out regular inspections and also get samples of material
used tested in laboratories of the State Government as well as, in certain cases, independent
laboratories, say those of the State Technical Agencies. The State Governments will issue the
requisite guidelines in this regard.

Each State Government will appoint a senior Engineer (not below the rank of
Superintending Engineer) to function as State Quality Coordinator (SQC) at the State level. His
function will be to oversee the satisfactory functioning of the Quality control mechanism within
the State. This function would also involve overseeing the follow up action on the reports of
the National Quality Monitors. The Quality Coordinator should be part of the SRRDA.
325

As the third tier of the Quality Control Structure, the NRRDA will engage Independent
Monitors (Individuals / Agency) for inspection, at random, of the road works under the
Programme. These persons may be designated as National Quality Monitors (NQM). It will be
the responsibility of the PIU to facilitate the inspection of works by the NQM, who shall be
given free access to all administrative, technical and financial records.

The National Quality Monitors shall inspect the road works with particular reference to
Quality. They may take samples from the site and get them examined by any competent
Technical Agency / Institution. They shall also report on the general functioning of the Quality
Control mechanism in the District. The Monitors shall submit their report to the NRRDA. The
reports of the NQMs will be sent by NRRDA to the State Quality Coordinator for appropriate
action within a period to be specified. In case quality check by SQM or NQM reveals
‘unsatisfactory’ work, the PIU shall ensure that the contractor replaces the material or rectifies
the workmanship (as the case may be) within the time period stipulated. In respect of NQM
Reports, the SQC shall, each month, report on the action taken on each of the pending
Reports. All works rated ‘unsatisfactory’ shall be re-inspected by an SQM or NQM after a
rectification report has been received from the State Quality Coordinator.
326

Recurrent adverse reports about quality of road works in a given District / State might
entail suspension of the Programme in that area till the underlying causes of defective work
have been addressed.

Monitoring
Effective monitoring of the Programme being critical, the State Governments will ensure
that the officials are prompt in sending the requisite reports / information to the SRRDA as well
as the NRRDA. The On-line Management & Monitoring System (OMMS) will be the chief
mechanism for monitoring the Programme. To this end, the officials are required to furnish,
‘On-line’, all the data and information, as may be prescribed by the NRRDA from time to time,
in the relevant module of the On-line Management & Monitoring System. They shall be
responsible for uninterrupted maintenance of the Computer Hardware and Software as well as
the Internet connectivity. The Software for the OMMS shall be supplied by the NRRDA and it
shall not be modified at any level in the States; any requirement or suggestion for change
shall be intimated to the NRRDA.
327

The State Government should provide necessary manpower, space and facilities to set up
the Computer Hardware at the District and State Level. Since the data would reside on the
State Servers, the State level Agency must ensure that the State Server is functional all 24
hours.

It shall be the responsibility of the Executive Engineer / Head of the PIU to ensure effective
up-time and Internet connectivity of the computers at the PIU / District level. He shall be
responsible for ensuring placement of all Master data including the Rural Roads Plan in the
database and for the constant updating and accuracy of data relating to the progress of road
works, record of Quality control tests as well as the payments made. In case of continued
failure to update data on the OMMS, further releases to the State / District concerned could be
affected.

Each State Government would identify one officer of sufficient seniority and having
adequate knowledge of Information Technology to function as State IT Nodal Officer. His
function will be to oversee the regularity and accuracy of the data being furnished by the
Districts. The IT Nodal Officer, who shall form part of the SRRDA, shall also be responsible to
oversee the upkeep of the Hardware and Software as well as the computer training
requirements of the personnel dealing with the PMGSY.
328

The District Vigilance and Monitoring Committee set up by the Ministry will also monitor
the progress and exercise vigilance in respect of PMGSY.

Convergence
Rural connectivity is not an end in itself. It is a means. It is expected that the connectivity
will improve indicators of education, health, rural incomes etc., provided as a follow up, and in
consultation with the local Panchayati Raj Institutions, convergence is achieved with other
ongoing Programmes in these sectors. It is expected that the District Panchayat will focus on
these issues. Before the start of work on Rural Roads, the bench mark development indicators
may be measured and attached to the detailed project report.

The NRRDA will provide 100% assistance for independent Studies to establish the impact
of the new rural connectivity in a District from time to time.
329
330

Annexure - III

INTEGRATING SOCIAL AUDITING INTO THE ICDS

Introduction
The Integrated Child Development Services (ICDS) Scheme offers an integrated delivery
package of early childhood services so that their synergistic effect can be taken full advantage
of. The Scheme aims to improve the nutritional and health status of vulnerable groups
including pre-school children, pregnant women and nursing mothers through providing a
package of services including supplementary nutrition, pre-school education, immunization,
health check-up, referral services and nutrition & health education. In addition, the Scheme
envisages effective convergence of inter-sectoral services in the anganwadi centres.
With the enactment of the Right to Information (RTI) Act of 2005, the people of India have
finally got a facilitating law that can enable them to exercise their fundamental right to
information. Through the exercise of this right they can initiate a process that could go a long
331

way in ensuring that the various programmes and schemes of the government are properly
implemented and that the intended beneficiaries receive the benefits that were meant for
them.

An analysis of the ICDS reveals that there are various entitlements that the people have
under this scheme. Many or most of these entitlements are vulnerable to distortions, if the
stakeholders were not involved in a meaningful way right from the planning stage,.

In order to ensure that such a meaningful involvement of the potential beneficiaries and
other stakeholders gets institutionalised, this manual describes the various steps that need
to be taken by the people and their groups and organisations to ensure transparency and
accountability by the government, the Panchayati Raj institutions and other implementing
agencies. The focus is on integrating people’s participation in the planning and auditing
process of the ICDS.

Integrating Social Auditing Into ICDS


332

S Stage Vulnerabilities Steps to be taken by the


n. government
1. Demarcati 1.Dominant / 1.Publicly display and have read out
on of area politically active the criteria for demarcation.
to be communities might 2.Also, publicise how the final
covered by be able influence demarcation meets with the
a new this decision prescribed criteria.
anganwadi 3.Where there seems to be a high
centre risk of the decision being
dominated by one section of the
[Responsib community, have separate
ility: Child discussions with each segment of
Developm the community. Where feasible,
ent have the community express its
Programm preference by anonymously
e Officer] putting stones next to a pictorial
depiction of options (like in
participatory rural appraisal
exercises).
333

S Stage Vulnerabilities Steps to be taken by the


n. government
2. Selection 1. Selected at aam 1.Publicly display and have read out
of the sabha meeting, the criteria for selection.
anganwadi may be influenced 2.Also, publicise the list of
worker by dominant applicants/potential appointees
communities and the reasons for the final
[Responsib selection.
ility: 3.Organise selection by secret ballot
CDPO] organised by putting stones next
to a pictorial depiction of
candidate (like in participatory
rural appraisal exercises).
3. Location of 1. Location selected at 1.Make public explicit criteria for
the aam sabha, location.
anganwadi influenced by 2.Within the area that qualifies, (eg.
2.Often not located in within SC/ST hamlets), determine
[Responsib SC / ST hamlets due specific location by first identifying
ility: to social pressures feasible options through open
and political
334

S Stage Vulnerabilities Steps to be taken by the


n. government
CDPO] influence exercised discussion – if required by
by dominant separate discussion with distinct
community groups – and then a secret ballot,
as described earlier.
4. Issuance of 1.Influenced by 1.All purchases through open
contracts contractor lobby tendering.
for 2.Corruption: 2.List of goods purchased and
supplies Supplied on paper corresponding list of the
(such as but may not reach anganwadis to which they are
toys, AWC supplied, to be published in local
weighing 3.Quantity supplied newspapers once a year and to be
machines may be low, so put up on the web.
etc.) material not used at 3.Each anganwadi to be supplied the
all (for. E.g. in one list of equipment and material that
[Responsib centre there are they have officially been allocated,
ility: only 6 slates and 30 and the list to be made public and
Director, children so the also read out.
335

S Stage Vulnerabilities Steps to be taken by the


n. government
ICDS] slates are not 4.Five randomly selected citizen’s to
brought out) certify the receipt of the listed
4.No facility to repair equipment and materials, once at
items that don’t the beginning of each year, and to
work (e.g. weighing certify their continued presence
machines) every three months. The
certificates to be displayed outside
the anganwadi and also become
an essential part of the district and
state accounts.

5.Responsibility to be fixed (and


resources made available) for
ensuring that the toys and other
equipment and materials are kept
in good repair. The three monthly
checks specified above would also
assess the state of repair and use
336

S Stage Vulnerabilities Steps to be taken by the


n. government
of the items.
SERVICE: Supplementary Nutrition
5. Establishm 1.Might be influenced 1.The guidelines and details of the
ent of by contractor lobby, Supreme Court order regarding
system for even though delivery system to be publicly
service contractors are not displayed and read out in a public
delivery to be issued for the meeting.
for implementation of 2.Discussion of details every six
supplemen the months, of the delivery system
tary supplementary being used, with the local people.
nutrition nutrition
programm programme as per
e (SNP) a 7.10.2004
Supreme Court
[Responsib order
ility:
Director,
337

S Stage Vulnerabilities Steps to be taken by the


n. government
ICDS]
6. Ensuring 1.CDPO or supervisor 1.The norms for the supply of food
supply of posts might be under the SNP would be made
food for vacant leading to public and displayed prominently.
SNP to the an absence of 2.The stock register would also be
anganwadi supervision made accessible to the public, who
2.Or, individual could examine it at will.
[Responsib appointed to a 3.A team of five randomly selected
ility: CDPO CDPO/ Supervisor women would be empowered to
and post might have make surprise checks and verify
Supervisor ‘additional charge’ stock register with existing stocks,
] of the anganwadi, and the food being distributed
again leading to compared to the prescribed
poor supervision norms.
3.SNP food sold in 4.This check must be done at least
black market at once a month and the reports
various levels would be sent to supervisory
338

S Stage Vulnerabilities Steps to be taken by the


n. government
officers and also displayed
publicly.
7. Implement 1.Restricted number 1.Where there are inadequate
ation of of beneficiaries allocations and beneficiaries have
SNP at the catered to since to be selected, the criteria for
anganwadi limited allocations selection must be publicly
are made for displayed and read out.
[Responsib supplementary 2.The list of beneficiaries finally
ility: nutrition selected must also be made public
anganwadi programme per along with the reasons for their
worker anganwadi. selection.
(AWW)] 2.Selection of 3.The timings for distribution of Take
beneficiaries is Home rations to be fixed in
politically consultation with the potential
influenced. beneficiaries and the timings
3.Distribution of Take displayed publicly. The distribution
Home Rations, of rations at times other than
339

S Stage Vulnerabilities Steps to be taken by the


n. government
might be done at a those specified should be
time when discouraged and the timings of
beneficiaries cannot actual distribution (as opposed to
be present at the scheduled distribution) be also
AWC displayed every week.
4.SNP food sold in
black market at
various levels

SERVICE: Immunisation and health care services


8. Supply of 1.Poor coordination 1.The norms for the supply of
medicines between Health and medicines would be made public
to Social Welfare/ and displayed prominently.
anganwad Women and Child 2.The stock register would also be
is Development made accessible to the public, who
Departments could examine it at will.
[Responsi 2.Corruption in 3.A team of five randomly selected
340

S Stage Vulnerabilities Steps to be taken by the


n. government
bility: supplies women would be empowered to
Director, 3.Old stock supplied, make surprise checks and verify
ICDS] including medicines stock register with existing stocks.
which have expired 4.This check must be done at least
4.There are supplies once a month and the reports
but not used so would be sent to supervisory
future supply is officers and also displayed
stopped publicly.
5.A list of medicines received, the
ailments that they are for and the
number used would also be
displayed every month and read
out in the public meetings.
9. Provision 2.No supervision of 1.Scheduled time/day for
of ANM’s work immunisation must be fixed in
immunisat 3.Refusal to open advance and publicised.
ion vaccines if a 2.Norms for immunisation activities
341

S Stage Vulnerabilities Steps to be taken by the


n. government
services minimum number (minimum numbers required, etc.)
of children not must also be publicised.
[Responsi present 3.The ANM must get
bility: 4.ANM visits at a time signatures/thumb impressions of
Auxiliary when women have at least five of the local women
Nurse already gone for certifying the time and day she
Midwife work visited, and how many children
(ANM)] she immunised. If no children were
immunised, then the reasons must
also be certified.
4.A copy of this certificate must be
put up on the notice board in the
village every week and the
summary be read out to the
villagers, including the names of
those who certified, every six
months.
342

S Stage Vulnerabilities Steps to be taken by the


n. government
10 Growth 1.Not done regularly 1.The responsibilities of the AWW be
. Monitorin 2.Growth charts not publicised regularly.
g maintained, so 2.The AWW publicly state in the
there may not be scheduled meeting the names of
[Responsi effective monitoring those children that were not
bility: of malnutrition regularly monitored, along with
AWW] levels reasons why they were not
3.Does not cover ALL monitored.
children but only 3.These public meetings also used to
those enrolled in assess how well mothers
the centre understand the purpose and
4.Those in the 0-3 meaning of the various health
age group left out related activities for their children.
and only those This can be done by once in six
children who come months or once a year having a
to the centre quiz with some nominal prizes. The
everyday are AWW whose group consistently
weighed gets low marks should be given a
343

S Stage Vulnerabilities Steps to be taken by the


n. government
5.Purpose and warning and, if there is no
meaning not improvement, removed.
explained to 4.Five randomly selected citizens to
mothers certify the receipt of the listed
6.Weighing machines growth monitoring equipment and
may be out of order materials, once at the beginning of
and not fixed, so each year, and to certify their
growth monitoring continued presence every three
stops for months on months. The certificates to be
end displayed outside the anganwadi
and also become an essential part
of the district and state accounts.
5.Responsibility to be fixed (and
resources made available) for
ensuring that the growth
monitoring equipment is kept in
good repair. The three monthly
checks specified above would also
344

S Stage Vulnerabilities Steps to be taken by the


n. government
assess the state of repair and use
of the items.
SERVICE: Pre-School Education
11 Conducting 1.Centre open for 1.Scheduled time for centre to be
. pre-school too little time – open must be fixed in advance and
activities only an hour or publicised.
everyday two 2.Norms of activities in the centre,
2.No teaching aids along with the aids prescribed and
[Responsibi 3.AWW not trained sanctioned, must also be
lity: AWW] on pre-school publicised.
activities. 3.The ANM must get
signatures/thumb impressions of
at least five of the local women
certifying the time, each day that
the centre was open.
4.A summary of this certificate must
be put up on the notice board in
345

S Stage Vulnerabilities Steps to be taken by the


n. government
the village every week and the
summary read out to the villagers
every six months, including the
names of those who certified.

SALIENT FEATURES OF THE INTEGRATED CHILD


DEVELOPMENT SERVICES
346

Introduction

As per 1991 census, India has around 150 million children, constituting 17.5% of India's
population, who are below the age of 6 years. A large number of them live in economic and
social environ- ment which impede the child's physical and mental development. These
conditions include poverty, poor environmental sanitation, disease, infection, inadequate
access to primary health care, inappropriate child caring and feeding practices. Government of
India proclaimed a National Policy on Children in August 1974 declaring children as,
"supremely important asset". The policy provided the required framework for assigning priority
to different needs of the child. The programme of the Integrated Child Development
Services (ICDS) was launched in 1975 seeking to provide an integrated package of services
in a convergent manner for the holistic development of the child.

The Integrated Child Development Services (ICDS) Scheme was conceived in 1975 with an
integrated delivery package of early childhood services so that their synergistic effect can be
taken full advantage of. The Scheme aims to improve the nutritional and health status of
vulnerable groups including pre-school children, pregnant women and nursing mothers
through providing a package of services including supplementary nutrition, pre-school
education, immunization, health check-up, referral services and nutrition & health education.
347

In addition, the Scheme envisages effective convergence of inter-sectoral services in the


anganwadi centres.
Targetted Beneficiaries
The Scheme targets the most vulnerable groups of population including children upto 6 years
of age, pregnant women and nursing mothers belonging to poorest of the poor families and
living in disadvantaged areas including backward rural areas, tribal areas and urban slums.
The identification of beneficiaries is done through surveying the community and identifying
the families living below the poverty line.

Recipients Calories Grams of Protein


Children upto 6 Years 300 8-10
Adolescent Girls 500 20-25
Pregnant and nursing mothers 500 20-25
Malnourished Children Double the daily supplement provided to the
348

other children(6000 and/or special utrients on


medical recommendation

Objectives
The objectives of the scheme are :-
• to improve the nutritional and health status of pre-school children in the age-group of 0-6
years;
• to lay the foundation of proper psychological development of the child;
• to reduce the incidence of mortality, morbidity, malnutrition and school drop-out;
• to achieve effective coordination of policy and implementation amongst the various
departments to promote child development; and
• to enhance the capability of the mother to look after the normal health and nutritional needs
of the child through proper nutrition and health education.
Package of Services:
To achieve the above objectives, the ICDS aims at providing a package of services, consisting
of
349

• Supplementary Nutrition;
• Immunization;
• Health Check-up;
• Referral Services;
• Non-formal Pre-school Education; and
• Nutrition & Health Education.
The programme provides an integrated approach for converging basic services through
community-based Anganwadi Workers and helpers, supportive community structures/women's
group -through the Anganwadi Centre, the health system and in the community. Besides this,
the AW is a meeting ground where women's/mother's group can come together, with other
frontline workers, to promote awareness and joint action for child development and women's
empowerment.
Expansion of ICDS
The ICDS Scheme was sanctioned during 1975-76 in just 33 blocks of the country. At present,
there are 4200 Operational ICDS Projects in the Country. Approval of the Cabinet has been
obtained for operationalisation of 461 new ICDS blocks under World Bank assisted ICDS III and
ICDS-APER projects during the next three years. In addition to this proposal for
350

operationalisation of 390 ICDS Projects in a phased manner during IXth Plan period under
General ICDS scheme has been submitted to CCEA for approval.
Expenditure on ICDS
Alongside gradual expansion of the Scheme, there has also been a significant increase in the
Central Government's spending on implementation of the Scheme. As against the expenditure
of only Rs. 1190.21 crores during 17 years,i.e. 1975-76 to 1991-92, the expenditure during the
five years of the 8th Plan period was Rs. 2271.28 crores representing 191% increase in during
just 5 years period as compared to 17 years period. The expenditure of Rs.2271.28 crores
during VIIIth Plan was against the approved VIIIth Plan outlay of Rs.1285.74 crores for ICDS.
During 1999-2000, against the budgetary allocation of Rs.855.76 crores , an amount of
approximately Rs. 772 crores has been released upto Sept. 1999.

Coverage
The number of beneficiaries under the ICDS Scheme have also significantly increased over the
period. As against 1.66 crores beneficiaries uptill March 1992, there are at present 2.77 crores
beneficiaries as on June 1999.
(Source: www.wcd.nic.in/childdet.htm)
351

Dungarpur Social Audit


Performa (A)
Social Audit Report (Village Schedule)

Padyatra Group No………… Date: ………..

Village:………………Panchayat:……………Panchayat Samiti……………
1. Approximate number of people in the meeting: …………………….
Registration
2. Have people in this village registered under the NREGA.………… Y/N
3. How many people have applied but not been registered ……………...
4. How many have complained about irregularities in the registration process…………..
352

5. Who are the people (indicate names)


6. What action has been taken on each complaint…………….
Job Card
7. Have job cards been issued in the village. …………………….. Y/N
Which month were they issued………………………………………..
8. How many have registered, but have not received job cards…………. …
9. How many have filed complaints regarding job cards………………….………………….
10. What action has been taken on these complaints……………………..

Village Schedule 2
Application for work
11. How many people have applied but not got work yet………………..
12. How many have applied for work and got receipts?………………….
353

13. If people have not given written Applications, and not received receipts, what are the
reasons
a) Application forms not available
b) Cannot write
c)Panchayat did not accept the application
d) Panchayat did not give a receipt
14. How many people applied for work who
a) Got work in 15 days.
b) Who got work after 15 days.
c)Who have not yet got work.
15. Has anyone applied for unemployment allowance………………name & details.
Payment
16. In how many days was payment made……………………………
354

17. How many people got payment after 15 days………………….


how many people got payment after 30 days………………………
18. Was some part of the wages paid as advance ………………… Y/N
If yes, at what rate…………………………..
19. Was payment at made at a public place …………………. Y/N, If not, then where was
the payment made?………...
20. Was payment made in the day ………………………… Y/N
21. At the time of payment –
Village Schedule 3
a) Was the Payment made on the muster roll.
b) Was the muster roll read out?
c) Was the Muster roll displayed at the time of payment.
d) Paid without the muster roll.
355

22. How far is the work site from the village………………………


23. Was the work identified in the Gram Sabha ……………….. Y/N
24. Is there a monitoring committee set up for the works at the village
level……………………………………
25. Do people in the village think that the work is useful ……………Y/N
26. Is there any complaint in respect of the NREGA -:
Corruption,
Irregularities
other……………………………. Give details.

Name of person filling the schedule Signature


356

DUNGARPUR SOCIAL AUDIT


Performa (B)

Social Audit Report (Work Site)

Padyatra Group No…………. Date:………….

Name of work……………. Panchayat……………

Panchayat Samiti……………

Agency executing the work ………….

Sanctioned Amount……………………

Muster roll numbers of the muster rolls at the work site…………….


357

1. No of workers on the work Site…………………..


2. Is there a Board displaying the details of the work Y /N
If yes , which of the following is displayed
a) sanctioned amount
b) amount of the work/task assigned to each worker
c) number of workers on the M.R.
d) number of workers present
e) estimated worker days
f) materials needed
g) material received on the day, specify date.
h) description of the sanctioned work and specifications.
3. Do workers know of the sanctioned amount and the usefulness (?) of the work
4. Is the muster roll available at the work site ?
358

5. Has the Monitoring Committee checked the muster roll.. Y / N


Work Site 2
6. Has the Village Monitoring Committee evaluated the quality and usefulness of the work
…………………………….Y / N
If yes describe the details

7. If it is a “pucca” work, is there a Material Register maintained on the work


site………………………………………………. Y / N
8. Is attendance taken on the muster roll or in a note book/register ? specify .
9. Is there an Anganwadi or Creche at the work site ?
10. Is there provision for shade / water / medicines at the work site?
11. Are Job Cards of workers available at the work site ?
12. Have details of work been entered in the Job Card ?
13. Who keeps the job cards?
359

Questions that should be asked during discussions with workers on the Work Site

14. Was the task measured and given before work started ………… Y / N

15. If there are groups of workers per task, what is the size of the group ?

16. Is task given on an individual or group basis ?

17. Is the task measured daily and the worker informed about the quantum of measurement ?

18. Does the Junior Engineer measure the work at the end of each work period ( Pakhwada) in
front of the workers ?

19. Is there a fixed time for workers to be present at the work site ?

20. How many times is the attendance taken in a day ……… when is it taken ?

21. Is the lift and lead taken into consideration at the time of fixing the task ?
360

Work Site 3

Suggestions of activities for the Padyatra Group at the work site

22. Check the muster roll, read out muster roll, how many workers are entered
on the muster roll . How many workers are present at the work site ?
23. Is the muster roll available for checking by all workers at the work site ?
24. No of women / men workers at the work site
men…………………………….women ……………………….
25. Are there any complaints of workers regarding conditions at the work site ?
26. Is the work being done through a Contractor ?
27. Are machine/s being used at the work site or have they been used ? If yes Please
describe for what purpose.
361

Name of person filling the schedule Signature

DUNGARPUR SOCIAL AUDIT


Performa (C)
Social Audit Report (Panchayat Office)

Padyatra Group No…………. Date:………….

Panchayat…………… Panchayat Samiti……………


Name of Sarpanch…………………. Name of Panchayat Secretary………..
362

1. Does the Panchayat Office have a Board displaying the details of work under the
NREGA ? ……………………………………
If yes, then is the following information entered
a) Name of the work b) Sanctioned amount – labour / materials
c) Expenditure –labour / materials d) State of work – completed / incomplete
2. Is there a shelf of projects for NREGA works prepared by the Gram Sabha, including a list
of works in order of priority, available in the Panchayat Office?
a) Has this list of works been displayed ?
b) How many of the on going works sanctioned have been taken from the shelf of Projects
approved by the Gram Sabha?
c) In how many of these works have work orders been issued?
d) Has the order of priorities in the Shelf of Projects been followed in the issuing of work
orders?
363

3. How many works have started and how many labour are working on each work site ?
4. Are copies of Muster rolls displayed at the Panchayat Bhavan for public scrutiny ?
…………………………….Y / N
5. Is there a Complaint Box or register available at the Panchayat Office ? …Y / N
……………..If yes then how many complaints have been received? What action has been
taken on them?
6. Is the list of Job Cards issued available for public scrutiny?
Y / N ………………………………..
7. What is the method for receiving applications from
Panchayat Office 2
8. Is the Panchayat Secretary available at the Panchayat Office time every day at a fixed
time every day ? …………………… Y / N
9. How many people are employed by the Panchayat Office to look after the NREGA ?
10. Is the process of registration and issue of Job Cards open at all time ….?
…………………………………….Y / N
364

11. Is the Perspective Plan or the sanctioned list of works approved by the Gram Sabha
,open for public scrutiny at the Gram Panchayat ?
12. What are the suggestions of the Sarpanch, Panchayat Secretary and the Ward Panchs
regarding the NREGA ?

Name of person filling the schedule Signature

Note: These formats were made for the mass social audit conducted in Dungarpur
(Rajasthan) by the Rozgaar Evam Suchana Adhikar Abhiyan from 15th to 26th April 2006.
They can be modified and used for a concurrent social audit- i.e. while works are going on.
These are not appropriate ‘post facto’ social audit formats, i.e. for works that have been
completed, or for verification of muster rolls relating to earlier periods.

There are three kinds of performas- one to be used in the village, one at the work site, and
one at the Gram Panchayat Office.
365

The attempt is primarily to find out which if any of the essential requirements of the NREGA
– in particular from the point of view of the workers entitlements is not being followed, so
that immediate corrective action can take place.

Most of the provisions referred to in the proforma can be found in the NREGA guidelines, or
in the Act. The guidelines can be accessed at the MORD website www.nrega.nic.in .

Many State Governments have also issued their own guidelines which should be looked at
while preparing social audit proformas for use in each state. For instance, some states have
much better use of IT provisions than others, but the efficacy of these provisions need to be
checked at the field level.

The Rozgaar Evam Suchana Adhikar Abhiyan can be contacted at srabhiyan@gmail.com


For more information you could also contact mkssrajasthan@gmail.com
366

REPORT OF THE SOCIAL AUDIT CONDUCTED IN UDAIPUR


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368

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373

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375

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376

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379

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3- dke ds vkosnu ls lacaf/kr

O;fDrxr laidZ ds nkSjku yksxksa ls ppkZ


• dke ds fy;s vkosnu esV }kjk Hkjs tk jgs Fks] yksxkasa dsk irk Hkh ugh Fkk fd mUgs vkosnu
djuk gSA

xzke lHkk esa yksxksa }kjk mBkbZ xbZ f’kdk;rsa


380

Ø Ukke tkWcd dke ds Lkjiap fu"d"kZ


0 kMZ vkosnu ls @
la- lacaf/kr lfpo }
f’kdk;r kjk
Li"Vhdj
.k”
1 foUrk 36 tkWc dkMZ Nwljs iqu%j[kus
@vtqZ esa 1 ls 28 etnwjk ij jkth
u rkjh[k rd sa dks gq;s]
¼[ksM dke ekSdk foUrk tSls
+h½ ekaxus dh nsuk vkSj Hkh
bUVªh gSA pkgrs dbZ yksx
ysfdu 15 FksA gS ftUgs
rkΠrd j[kk vkSj ;k
vkSj fQj yxkrkj
euk dj dke dh
fn;kA t:jr Fkh
ysfdu
381

mUgs
chp ls gh
dke ls
fudky
fn;k x;kA

3.3 dke ds vkosnu ls lacaf/kr lkekftd vads{k.k in;k=k Vksyh }kjk fVIi.kh &
• dgha Hkh yksx dke ds fy;s vkosnu ugha dj jgs gS] ftlls fd csjkstxkjh HkRrs dk loky
gh iSnk ugh gksrk gSA esVksa }kjk eu ethZ ls 15&15 fnu ds vkosnu Hkjs x;s ;g
dk;ZLFky ij gh ny }kjk ns[kk x;kA

4- lkekftd vads{k.k ds nkSjku in;k=k Vksyh }kjk dk;ZLFky dh fjiksVZ

• 5 fdŒehŒ ds vanj gh dk;Z py jgk Fkk] ugj in ;k=k nkSjku lw[kh ikbZ xbZA

• cksMZ Fkk ysfdu iwjh tkudkjh ugh FkhA


382

• eLVjjksy dk;Z LFky ij Fks yksxksa ds vuqlkj igyh ckj gh eLVj jksy dk;ZLFky ij vk;s
gSA ysfdu 'kke 5 cts rd eLVjjksy [kkyh ns[ks x;sA esV ls dgus ij fd vki eLVjjksy
Hkjsa] irk pyk fd og fy[kuk gh ugh tkurkA vU; O;fDr ds }kjk dkWih ;k jftLVj esa
gktjh yh tkrh gSA
• in;k=k ds pyrs gh ikuh] LokLF;] Nk;k vkfn dh lqfo/kk;ss ns[kus dks feyh
• cPps dk ikyuk rks dk;ZLFky ij feyk ysfdu ,d Hkh cPpk ugha FkkA
• 12 ls 45 :Ik;s dh nj ls gh etnwjksa] esVks] ikuh okys dks fey jgk gSA
• yksxks ds vuqlkj dk;ksZ ij 1 ls vf/kd txg ij tslhch e’khuksa dk mi;ksx gqvk gSA
• esV dks eki dh fcYdqy Hkh tkudkjh ugha gSA etnwjksa dks eki ds vuqlkj dke
ugha fn;k tkrk gS iwjs fnu esa fdruk Hkh dke etnwj }kjk fd;k tkrk gS Hkqxrku
lHkh dk ,d tSlk vkrk gSA
• dk;Z LFky ij vf/kdrj efgyk;s gh ns[kh xbZA
• dk;Z ds nkSjku lM+d o ugj dh QksVksxzkQh dh xbZA
• dkxt ij rks fuxjkuh lfefr xfBr gS ysfdu lfefr ds lnL;ksa dks Lo;a irk ugha fd oks fdlh
lfefr esa gSA ftlls dk;Z dh u rks fuxjkuh dh xbZ vkSj u gh xq.koRrk dh tkap gks
ikbZA
383

5- lkexzh laca/kh vfu;ferrk

dk;Z dk uke % tk[ke ifj;kstuk /kfj;kon psu 0 ls Vsy rd & xzke % xksVM+k]
iapk;r lfefr& /kfj;kon dksM& DH- 470

foHkkx%& ty laalk/ku foHkkx] tk[ke mij{k.k prqFkZ eqaxk.kk

eki iqfLrdk esa vafdr fooj.k %&


eki iqfLrdk ØŒ 1716 ¼xksBM+k ekbuj DH- 470 ½ ds I`k"B la- 008 rFkk S ls CK esa
vafdr ek=k ds vuqlkj Jh fd’kksj dqekj Bsdsnkj }kjk 18-96 ?ku ehVj iRFkj ekg fnlEcj]
2006 esa nj 296-77 izfr ?ku ehVj dqy jkf’k :i;s 5620-76 dk iRFkj ykuk n’kkZ;k x;k gSA

dk;ZLFky ij dk;Z dj pqds yksxksa }kjk fn;s x;s oDrO;


384

dk;Z dj pqds dkjhxjksa us crk;k fd iRFkj ckgj ls ugha exk, x;s gS rFkk iRFkj
dk;ZLFky ij gh miyC/k crk;s x;s gSA ;g c;ku dkjhxjksa us 19 Qjojh 2007 dh xzke lHkk
esa fn;sA bl dk;Z esa dke dj pqds dkfu;k@ uxth ] tkWc dkMZ la- 443 ds fyf[kr c;ku
layXu gSA

xzke lHkk esa lR;kfir


xzke lHkk esas Hkh yksxksa }kjk c;ku fn;s x;s rFkk dfu"B vfHk;ark us Hkh ckgj ls
iRFkj ugha exk;s] LohdkjkA rFkk bldh iqf"V djrs gq;s dk;ZØe vf/kdkjh us tkap dk
vk’oklu xzke lHkk esa fn;kA

2.2 lkekftd vads{k.k in;k=k Vksyh }kjk fVIi.kh &


• yksx xzke lHkk esa ng’kr esa Fks fQj Hkh yksxksa us vius eqag [kksys vkSj lkjh
vfu;ferrk;sa ljiap o ftEesnkj vf/kdkfj;ksa us xzke lHkk esa gh LohdkjhA
• dgha Hkh yksx dke ds fy;s vkosnu ugha dj jgs gS] ftlls fd csjkstxkjh HkRrs dk loky
gh iSnk ugh gksrk gSA esVksa }kjk eu ethZ ls 15&15 fnu ds vkosnu Hkjs x;s ;g
dk;ZLFky ij gh ny }kjk ns[kk x;kA
385

• yksxksa ds vuqlkj Hkqxrku ds le; yksxks dks Åij dh jkf’k ugha nh xbZA
• yksxks ads vuqlkj muls tkWc dkMZ cukus o eLVjjksy dk;ZLFky rd ykus gsrq esVks
okMZ esEcjksa o lfpoksa }kjk etnwjksa ls 50ls 100 :i;s rd fy;s x;sA o eksVj lkbfdy
ls eLVjjksy ykus gsrq IkzR;sd etnwj ls 2 ls 5 :i;s fy;s x;sA

5.4 lwpuk ,oa jkstxkj vf/kdkj vfHk;ku dh ekax@lq>ko

ik;s x;s RkF;ksa dh foLr`r ¼mDr vfu;ferrkvksa ds vykok Hkh vfu;ferrk;sa gksus dh
laHkkouk gS bu rF;ksa ds vk/kkj ij vkSj Hkh vfu;ferrk;sa½ tkap djsa
386

lkekftd vads{k.k ds nkSjku yksxks }kjk mBk;s xbZ leL;k;sa


,oa xzke lHkk esa mHkjh leL;k lacaf/kr rF;ksa dh fjiksVZ
&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&
&&&&&&&&&&
xzke iapk;r& tSdM+k iapk;r lfefr& >kM+kSy
1- tkscdkMZ lacaf/kr

O;fDrxr laidZ ds nkSjku laidZ esa ykbZ xbZ f’kdk;rsa

Ø Ukke tkscdkMZ ls fVIi.kh


lacaf/kr f’kdk;r
1 dslj ckbZ • tkWc dkMZ lk{kj gS ysfdu
@ fgEer ugha feyk vaxwBs ls Hkqxrku
flag] • mlds uke ij mBk;k
tkWc QthZ dke
387

dkMZ fn[kk;k
ua-& 123
tsdM+k
2 larks"k@ 572 esa 500 :i;s gh
ukuk th ] etnwj dk izkIr
tkWc gq;sA
dkMZ
ua-& 04
vkscjk
fVIi.kh& laidZ nkSjku vU; yksxksa ds Hkh Hkqxrku
esa Åij ds iSlks dks dkVdj fn;k x;k gSA vr% foLr`r
tkap djsA

2 dke ds vkosnu ls lacaf/kr

O;fDrxr laidZ ds nkSjku yksxksa }kjk fn, x, oDrO;ksa ds vk/kkj ij


388

• lkewfgd vkosnu lfpo ,oa esV }kjk Hkj fy;s tkrs gSA
• dk;Z ij vkus ds ckn Jfedksa dk vkosnu Hkjk tkrk gSA
• vkosnu dh jlhn ugha nh tkrh gSA

3 lkekftd vads{k.k ds nkSjku in;k=k Vksyh }kjk dk;ZLFky dh fjiksVZ

• iapk;r eq[;ky; ls 3 fdŒehŒ dh nwjh ds vUnj gh dk;Z gq;s A


• dk;Z ij cksMZ Fkk ysfdu iw.kZ lwpuk;s ugh n’kkZbZ xbZA
• eLVjjksy dk;ZLFky ij miyC/k Fks ysfdu igyh ckj gh eLVjjksy dk;ZLFky ij ns[ks x;sA
• 50 Jfedkas esa 1 efgyk ikuh fiykus okyh Fkh] Nk;k dh ,ao LokLF; lqfo/kk dk;ZLFky ij
ugh FkhA
• ikuh fiykus okys dk Hkqxrku vU; Jfedks adh rjg fd;k tk jgk Fkk ¼40ls 45½
• Lo;a esV dks eki dh tkudkjh ugha Fkh rFkk uki ls dk;Z ugh fn;k tk jgk Fkk cfYd dke
lkewfgd :i ls fn;k tk jgk FkkA
• dk;Z LFky ij yxHkx 70%30 ds vuqikr ls efgyk % iq:"k dke ij FksA
389

• fuxjkuh lfefr cuh gS] ysfdu yksxksa dks bldh tkudkjh ugh gSA ftlls dk;Z dh ns[k js[k
Bhd rjhds ls ugha gks ikbZ gSA

4- ny dh fVIIk.kh
• laiw.kZ lkekftd vads{k.k esa fudys rF;ksa ij xzke lHkk esa ljiap us fdlh rjg dk dksbZ
tckc ;k Li"Vhdj.k ugh fn;kA
• etnwjksa }kjk fdlh rjg dk vkosnu ugh fn;k tkrk gSA esVksa }kjk eLVjjksy vkus ds
ckn vkosnu djok;s tkrs gS rFkk bldh jlhn ugha nh tkrhA

5- vfHk;ku dh ekax
mDr rF;ksa ds vk/kkj ij gh vU; yksxksa dh foLr`r tkap gksA

6 lq>ko
• xkao ds yksxksa dks bl ;kstuk ds ckjs esa tu izfrfuf/k;ksa dks crkuk pkfg;sA ftlls
yksxksa dks izfØ;k ds ckjs esa irk py lds vkSj fu;ec) rjhds ls ;kstuk fØ;kfUor gks
ldsA
• esV ds :Ik esa i<+h fy[kh efgykvksa dks Hkh yxkuk pkfg;sA
390
391

xzke iapk;r& u;kokl iapk;r lfefr&dksVM+k


&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&
&&&&&&

1- lkekftd vads{k.k ds nkSjku in;k=k Vksyh }kjk dk;ZLFky dh fjiksVZ

• dk;ksaZ dk p;u vko’;drk vkSj izkFkfedrk ds vk/kkj ij ughs gqvkA


• dk;Z 5 fdŒehŒ dh nwjh ds vanj gh gks jgk Fkk]
• dk;Z LFky ij eLVjjksy miyC/k ik;s x;s ysfdu etnwjksa ds vuqlkj ;g igyh ckj vk;s gS
ysfdu muesa uke ntZ ugha fd;s x;s FksA
• ihusa dk ikuh@Nk;k ,oe~ LokLF; lqfo/kkvks dh O;oLFkk FkhA
• 5 ls 7 cPPksa gj lkbZM ij Fks ysfdu dsz'k O;oLFkk ugha gSaA 1&1 ikyuk
dk;ZLFky ij ns[kk x;kA
• esV dks eki dh tkudkjh ugh gS u gh etnwjksa dks dke eki dj fn;k tk jgk gSA lkewfgd
:i ls etnwj dke dj jgs gSA
• dk;Z ij yxs efgyk iq:"k dk vuqikr yxHkx 60%40 dk gSA
392

• dk;Z ls iwoZ vFkok ckn esa QksVksxzkQh ugha gqbZA


• fuxjkuh lfefr dkxt esa cuh gSa fuxjkuh lfefr }kjk dHkh dk;Z ugha ns[kk x;kA

2- eLVjjksy esa ntZ jkf'k ls de Hkqxrku

xkao i[kokM Jfed izfr Jfed de


+k la[;k de Hkqxrk
vof/k Hkqxrk u dqy
u feyk jkf'k
osjk@d 16&30 100 80 :i;s 8000
krjk vizsy :i;s
06

ekrk?kkVh ls gouh Qyk lM+d dk;Z ij mDr i[kokM+s esa lHkh etnwjksa ds eLVjjksy esa
480 :- ntZ gSA tcfd okLro esa mUgsa 400 :- dk gh Hkqxrku fd;k x;kA ftldh tkap dh
tk;sA
393

3- tkWc dkMZ ij QksVks yxkus dh jkf'k olwyh xbZ


xkao ckxksrk esa okMZ iap ds ifr rstkjke us izfr tkWc dkMZ nks :i;s ¼200X2) ds fglkc ls
400 :- fy;s x;sA

4- dke ds vkosnu izi= dh jkf'k olwyh x;h

xkao ckxksrk esa esVksa }kjk vkosnu izi= ds nks :i;s izfr ¼100X2) ds fglkc ls 200 :-
fy;s x;sA

5- dk;Z ugha fd;k x;k ijUrq Hkqxrku mBk;k x;k] etnwjks dks iSlk ugha feyk

dz uke tkW eLVj i[kokM d jk


a- c jksy +k k; f'
la- dk la[;k Z k
394

MZ fn
la[; ol
k
1 bUnzk 905 1&15 5 1
@/kekZ 25& tqykbZ2 3
3 06 0
2 Hkh[kyh 54 905 1&15
1 5
@ghjkyk 24& tqykbZ
3 2
y 06 0
3 lsnuk@u 852 1&15
9- 3
kfu;k 95& twu 06
5 2
0
4 g.kxaw 386 868 3 ls 15 1 4
@ckcw 47& twu 06 0 0
0
395

5 uktwjh 294 16&30 1 5


@vtk twu 06 3 2
0
fVIi.kh& yksxksa ds vuqlkj buds vykok
vkSj Hkh vU; etnwj gS ftuds uke ij
QthZ Hkqxrku mBk;k x;k gSA

6- ,d O;fDr dk ,d gh fnukad esa nks dk;Z LFkkuksa ij n'kkZuk

dza- uke tkW eLVjjks i[kok dk;Z jkf'k


la- c y la[;k M+k fnol
396

dkM
Z
la[;k
1 tekyk@/ 239 1&15 13 500
kekZ 80545 tqykb
@10 Z 06
2 tekyk@/ 239 90545 1&15 13 520
kekZ @10 tqykb
Z 06
uksV %& mDr O;fDRk dk nks dk;ksZa gM+er
ls xqtfu;k lM+d rFkk ihiyh ls xqtfu;k
lM+d dk;Z ij ,d gh fnukad esa n'kkZ dj
mDr jkf'k mBk;h x;hA

7- lkekftd vads{k.k in;k=k Vksyh }kjk fVIi.kh &


397

• vkosnu laca/kh o tkWc dkMZ laca/kh tkudkjh yksxksa dks ugha gS ftlls esVks }
kjk euethZ dk dke fd;k tk jgk gS vkSj vusd izdkj dh vfu;ferrk;s gks jgh gSA tSls
& tkWc dkMZ esa dkaV&NkaV] bUVªh eLVjjksy ls feyku u gksuk] vkSj tks
jkf’k ;k dk;Zfnol tkWc dkMZ esa ;k eLVjjksy esa ntZ gS mruh jkf’k etnwj dks u
feyuk vkfnA
• in;k=k ds nkSjku gh dkQh gn rd dk;ZLFky ij lqfo/kk;s] eLVjjksy vkfn phts ns[kus
dks feyh vU;Fkk etnwjksa ds vuqlkj bl izdkj ls dHkh ugha gqvkA

8- lwpuk ,oa jkstxkj vf/kdkj vfHk;ku dh ekax

• ikbZ xbZ vfu;ferrkvksa dh foLr`r tkap dj dk;Zokgh djsaA

lq>ko
dk;Z ds iwoZ o ckn esa okMZ LRkj ;k xzke Lrj ij ,d cSBd vk;ksftr dh tkuh pkfg;s
ftlesa ikjnf’kZrk gsrq O;; jkf’k lfgr vU; ppkZ;sa gksuh pkfg;s rkfd vke vkneh Hkh iwjh
izfØ;k esa Hkkxhnkj gks ldsA
398

lkekftd vads{k.k ds nkSjku yksxks }kjk mBk;s xbZ


leL;k;sa ,oa
xzke lHkk esa mHkjh leL;k lacaf/kr rF;ksa dh fjiksVZ
&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&

xzke iapk;r& uÅok iapk;r lfefr&ekoyh

2- tkscdkMZ lacaf/kr

O;fDrxr laidZ ds nkSjku lkeus ykbZ xbZ f’kdk;rsa


• yksxks }kjk vkosnu djus ij Hkh tkWc dkMZ ugha cuk;s ;k fn;s x;sA tSls fd

xsgjh yky@xesjk us nks ckj vkosnu fd;k ysfdu tkWc dkMZ vHkh rd ugha
feykA blh izdkj vU; yksx gS] tks dke djuk pkgrs gS ysfdu muds tkWc dkMZ
tkjh ugha fd;s tk jgs gSA
399

3- dke ds vkosnu ls lacaf/kr

O;fDrxr laidZ ds nkSjku yksxksa ls dh xbZ ppkZ


• dke ds fy, vkosnu djuk gS yksxksa dks bl ckr dk irk ugha dk;Z vkjEHk
gksus ls ,d fnu igys lwpuk ns nh tkrh gSaA

3 lkekftd vads{k.k ds nkSjku in;k=k Vksyh }kjk dk;ZLFky dh fjiksVZ

• dk;Z dk p;u xzke ;k okMZ Lrj ij cSBdj izkFkfedrk ds vk/kkj ij ugh gqvk
gSA u gh xkao okyksa dks okf"kZd dk;Z;kstuk ds ckjs esa tkudkjh gSA
• dk;Z 5 fd-eh- ds vUnj gh py jgk FkkA xzsoy lM+d dk dk;Z py jgk Fkk dk;Z
,slh txg py jgk Fkk ftlls yksxksa dks ml jkLrsa ls Qk;nk ugha g]S D;ksa fd
ogka vkcknh ugh gS
400

• dk;ZLFky tgka ij dke py jgk Fkk ogka ij eLVjjksy miyC/k Fks ysfdu os Hkjs
ugh x;s Fks] etnwjksa ds vuqlkj igyh ckj gh eLVjjksy dk;ZLFky ij vk;s gS
ges’kk gh mudh gktjh fdlh jftLVj ;k dkxt ij yh tkrh gSA
• ihus dk ikuh@Nk;k ,oa LokLF; dh lqfo/kk miyC/k Fkh ¼ek:okl½ ysfdu
LokLF; dh lqfo/kk dk bartke jk; th xqM+k esa ugha FkkA
• jk; th dk xqMk lkbZM ij pkj cPpsa FksA dzs'k O;oLFkk Fkh
• ftl nj ls yscj dk Hkqxrku gks jgk gSa Amlh nj ls dzs'k O;oLFkk ds etnwjksa
dk Hkh Hkqxrku gks jgk gSa A etnwjksa dks 30 ls 50 ds chp Hkqxrku fd;k
x;kA
• esV dks eki dh tkudkjh ugha gSa A u gh etnwjksa dks ekidj dk;Z fn;k tkrk
gSaA estjeasV Hkh muds lkeus ugha fy;k tkrk gSaA
• i[kokM+k [kRe gksus ds ckn uirh dh tkrh FkhA nSfud eki dh tkudkjh
etnwjksa dks ugha nh tkrh FkhA
• dk;Z LFky ij dke ij efgyk;s T;knk ns[kh xbZA yxHkx efgyk % iq:"k ¾ 9%1
• fuxjkuh lfefr xfBr gSA ysfdu etnwjksa dsk bldh tkudkjh ugha gSaA
401

lkekftd vads{k.k in;k=k Vksyh }kjk fVIi.kh &


izHkko’kkyh yksxksa ds nckc es xzkeokfl;ksa ds eu esa ;g Mj Fkk fd ;fn
okLrfodrk dgsxsa rks gesa vxyh ckj dke ij ugha yxk;k tk;sxkA

lwpuk ,oa jkstxkj vf/kdkj vfHk;ku dh ekax@lq>ko

• dk;Z 'kq: gksus ds igys o ckn esa okMZ Lrj o xzke Lrj ij cSBds vk;ksftr
gksuh pkfg;sA
402

lkekftd vads{k.k ds nkSjku yksxks }kjk mBk;s xbZ


leL;k;sa ,oa
xzke lHkk esa mHkjh leL;k lacaf/kr rF;ksa dh fjiksVZ
&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&
xzke iapk;r& ck.kk dyk iapk;r lfefr&ljkM+k

1 dk;ksZ ls lacf/kr fooj.k

Ø dk;Z dk uke xkao ,tsUlh


Œ
1 xzsoy ljnq ukjM+k ukoM xzke
ls eqysuth + iapk;r
2 xzsoy ukoM+k ls Hksjo xkze
Fknk ok;k iuok k iapk;r
403

3 xzsoy cnxkjh ls cnxkj xkze


edjokf.k;k h iapk;r
4 cMk rkykc xgjk cnxkj xzke
,oa ejEer h iapk;r
5 ikyk mipkj ,oa Hksjo OufoHkk
Mcyw,p,l fuekZ.k k x

uksV%& lHkh dk;Z izxfr ij gSA

2 tkscdkMZ lacaf/kr
nyk @ghjk ] cnh@y{e.k] xkSre@Hkhek ¼Hksjok½ lfgr vU; yksxksa ds tkWc dkMZ
dk mi;ksx esV }kjk QthZ rjhds ls fd;k tk jgk gS vkSj QthZ bUVªh dj iSlk mBk;k tk jgk
gSA
404

3 dke ds vkosnu ls lacaf/kr

fcuk vkosnu ds dk;Z gks jgs gSA etnwjksa dks dke ds fy;s vkosnu dh dksbZ
tkudkjh ugh gSA esV }kjk [kqn gh Hkj fy;s tkrs gSA lHkh vkosnu 15 fnu ds fy;s gh
gksrs gSA

4- Hkqxrku lacaf/kr

Hkqxrku fcuk eLVjjksy ds gh ljiap ;k lfpo ds ?kj esa gksrs gSA vaxwBk ;k nLr[kr
dkih dk jftLVj esa ysrs gSA

5 fØ;kUo;u vkSj ns[kjs[k

dk;Z ds iwoZ ;k nkSjku fdlh Hkh izdkj dh QksVksxzkQh ugh dh xbZ u gh fuxjkuh
lfefr dh dksbZ Hkwfedk ns[kjs[k esa jgh D;ksa fd lfefr rks xfBr gS ysfdu lnL;ksa dks
405

rks irk gh ugha fd oks bl lfefr ds lnL; gSA ftlls dk;Z dh xq.koRrk dh Hkh tkap ugh
gks ikbZA

6 lkekftd vads{k.k ds nkSjku in;k=k Vksyh }kjk dk;ZLFky dh fjiksVZ

 xzke lHkk dk;Zokgh jftLVj easa izLrko ys j[kk gS] 6 ekgh ;k okf"kZd dk;Z vk;kstuk
lkoZtfud fuxjkuh ds fy, dgha Hkh pLik ugha gS] u gh vke yksxksa dks ekywe gSA
 vf/kdre nwjh 3 fdyksehVj gSa]
 dk;Z 1 o"kZ iwoZ ls py jgs gSa] cksMZ ,d ekg iwoZ yxk;s x;s gS
 dk;ZLFky ij eLVjjksy miyC/k ik;s x;s ysfdu [kkyh Fks vkSj esVks dks Hkh eLVjjksy
Hkjuk ugha vkrk FkkA
 dk;Z LFky ij LokLF; lqfo/kk gsrq nokbZ dk fdV] Nk;k] ikuh dh O;oLFkk] CkPpksa
gsrq >wyk vkfn O;oLFkk;s ns[kh xbZA
 dk;Z tslhch e'khu }kjk gks jgs gS o Bsdsnkjh ls Hkh dke py jgs FksA
 esV dks eki dh tkudkjh ugha gS o etnqjksa dks eki dj dk;Z ugha fn;k tk jgk gSaA
406

 dk;Z LFky ij ftrus Hkh etnwj dk;Zjr Fks lHkh ,d gh lewg esa dk;Z dj jgs Fks u rks dke
eki ds vuqlkj Fkk u gh esV ;k etnwjksa dks eki ds ckjs esa tkudkjh FkhA
 dk;Z LFky ij efgyk o iq:"k dh la[;k dk vuqikr yxHkx 40%60 dk FkkA

7 dke ugha fd;k x;k ijUrq Hkqxrku mBk;k x;k etnwj dks iSls ughs feys

dza- uke tkWc EkLVjj fnu jkf'k


la- dkMZ ksy
la[;k uEcj
1 nyk@g 42 60356 13 585
hjkth 61745 13 585
27048 12 1320
8 13 585
63649
;ksx 51 3075
407

buds }kjk ,d Hkh ckj dk;Z ugha fd;k rFkk budk tkWc dkMZ esV ds ikl gh Fkk tks fd
in;k=k ds nkSjku mUgsa fn;k x;k ftlesa 3075 :i;sa ntZ Fks] rFkk ;g jkf'k mDr eLVjjksy ls
mBk;h x;h gSa A ,d i[kokM+sa esa bUgsa dkjhxj ds :i easa fn[kk;k x;k gSa A
nyk@ghjk gLrk{kj djrs gSa tcfd eLVjjksy esa vaxwBk yxk;k gSaA

8 dke ls vf/kd dk;Zfnol dk Hkqxrku mBk;k x;k vkSj etnwj dks iSls ugh feys

dza- uke tkW okLrf tkWc tkWc Hkqx eLVjjksy la[;k


la- c od dkMZ dkM rku
dkM dk;Z esa Z jkf'k
Z i[kok ntZ esa vUrj
la[;k M+k i[kok ntZ
Ms+ vf/kd
dk;Zf
nol
1 Lakxhrk 27 5 7 26 1170 61744@63647@
408

@/kqyk 55554
@60358
2 / 33 3 6 37 1665 270492@47108
kqyh@Hkh @175657
ek
3 uoyh@xkSr 28 2 5 36 1584 270492
e
4 'kkafr@eka 34 5 7 26 1170 61743@63647
xhyky
5 fcUnq@fgjk 19 2 4 26 1170 55556@57951
yky
6 :Lre 132 1 3 26 1170 55552@60356
[kka@uwj'k ¼;g xkao ls ckgj
kg Fkk½
7 dkyw 77 1 3 21 945 177943@270496
@/kUuk th
8 dadw@ine 30 2 4 25 1100 60351@61746
409

k
9 yhyk@gdjk 173 2 5 40 1720 57954@60339
10 mnk@/kkoj 178 1 2 12 504 47097
k
11 :ih @ukuk 114 1 3 25 1064 57964
12 dpjk@vejk 192 2 4 24 1032 60338@61735

9 e'khuksa ¼tslhch½ dk iz;ksx

 ukoM+k ls FkM+k ok;k ikuok vkfnoklh cLrh lM+d dk;Z


 cM+xkjh ls edjokM+h lM+d dk;Z
 Hksjok ukyk mipkj dk;Z

mDr lkbZM+ksa ij ts-lh-ch- }kjk dk;Z fd;k x;k yksxksa }kjk bl ckr dh xzkelHkk es
aiqf"V dh xbZ rFkk ljiap o lfpo }kjk bl ckr dh Lohdkjk x;k rFkk dk;Zdze vf/kdkjh }kjk
dgk x;k fd geus ts-lh-ch- Vs.Mj fudky yxk;h A
10 ny dh fVIIk.k+h
410

 tkWc dkMZ yksxksa ds ikl u gksdj esV ds ikl Fks] pkgs og etnwj dk;Zjr gks ;k ughA
ftu yksxksa us dk;Z ugha fd;k gS muds ukeksa ij Hkh jkf'k mBkbZ xbZ gS etnwj
dks iSls ugha feys gSA
 dke ds fy;s vkosnu gsrq vf/kdrj yksxksa dks tkudkjh ugh gS] esVksa }kjk dke ds
fy;s vkosnu Hkj fn;s tkrs gS

11 lwpuk ,oa jkstxkj vf/kdkj vfHk;ku dh ekax@lq>ko


 foLr`r tkWp o dk;Zokgh vkisf{kr gSA
12 lq>ko
dk;Z ls iwoZ rFkk ckn esa xkao Lrj ij ,d cSBd vk;ksftr gksuh pkfg;s ftlesa turk ds chp
dke gq;s [kpkZSa dh ikjnf'kZrk] o xq.koRrk gsrq tkudkjh gks ldsA

ANNEXURE V
REPORT OF THE SOCIAL AUDIT CONDUCTED IN RANCHI
May, 2007
411

Panchayat: Tilma
Block: Khunti; District: Ranchi; State: Jharkhand

S. Name of Village Nature of Discrepancy Comment


No work s
.
• Fake Signatures. No work
done but payment made.
1. Jagni Devi (w/o
Kedar Swansi, Job Card
Talab No. 7) in MR 85052
Nirman on 2. Joto Swansi (s/o
Dagiyada
1. Ghirsa Mangra Swansi, Job Card MR 85052
g
Swansi’s No. 11) in MR 85052
land. • Measurements not
done in front of labourers.
• Work halted since
March, 2007 due to
incomplete payments.
412

• MR on site did not


match with the MR
Talab provided by the District
Nirman on Administration.
2. Munchi Puttidag • All labourers on
Munda’s worksite had never seen a
land. MR but their signatures
and thumb impressions
were present on the MRs.
3. Talab Hakkadu • Work on halt since MR 85105
Nirman on ba March, 2007 due to MR 85109
Chamara incomplete payments.
Munda’s • Payment of wages for Testimony
land. work done before work
was halted not made till
now.
• Fake entry on MR
85105. MRs Show that
Budhan Munda worked for
12 days, but according to
413

him he only worked for 6


days.
414

• MR no. tampered with.


• MR 85304 on worksite
not matching with MR
85304 provided by District
Sinchai
Administration as the MR
Koop
on worksite doesn’t have
Nirman on Hakkadu
4. signatures and thumb MR 85304
Soma ba
impressions.
Munda’s
land. • MR show payments
made according to Rs.
76.68 but labourers say
that payments made
according to Rs. 73.
5. Sinchai Karoda • Incomplete payment. Testimony
Koop • No visit by J.E. for
Nirman on measurement, even
Kinsuram’ though the depth of the
s land. well is now 18 feet.
415

• Confusion regarding
payment for cutting of
stone, according to the
‘choka’ system.
• Fake/Double entry on
MR 85233/85234
1.Bargi Mahli (s/o Mangra
Mahli, Job Card No. 63) has
worked for 9 days in a
Talab week, which is impossible.
Nirman on 2.Aetwari Devi (w/o Bargi
MR 85233
6. Birsa Tilma Mahli, Job Card No. 63) has
MR 85234
Munda’s worked for 8 days in a
land. week, which is impossible.
• Cheque of amount Rs.
23722 dated 30.03.07
reached on 17.05.07, just
a day before our visit to
the site.
7. Nahar Latarhatu • Double entry for 4 MR 1204
416

members of the same


family (Birsingh Munda, s/o
Gansa Munda, Job Card No.
2017) in MR 1204 and MR
1232, both for 8.03.06-
31.03.06.
Nirman on • Old Job cards given for
Surendra renewal. Have not been
MR 1232
Lohra’s received since last year.
land. • This project was
sanctioned on the name of
Surendra Lohra, who is the
former panchayat sevak,
but is actually being
constructed on Balku
Munda’s land.
417

8. Talab Sandaso • Fake entries. MRs MR 85084


Nirman on m 85084/86/90 show that MR 85086
Panda Sargi Devi (Job Card No. MR 85090
Munda’s 51) worked for 18 days;
land. she says she never worked MR 85092
at this site. MR 85098
• MRs show that Jambi
Devi (w/o Thakur Munda,
Job Card No. 9) worked for
24 days, whereas she only
worked for 12 days.
Similarly the MRs show
that her husband Thakur
Munda worked for 24 days
when he actually did only
12 days of work. They both
worked together for 24
days but the MRs show
that each did 24 days (i.e.
418

48 days of work).

General comments

1. Workers unwilling to come for work due to delayed payment.


2. Lack of general awareness about the NREGA.
3. Measurement not taken on time.
4. Payment is not done according to measurement.
419

Panchayat: Chatra
Block: Angada; District: Ranchi; State: Jharkhand

S. Name of Villag Nature of Comments Refere


No Work - OR e Discrepancy nce No.
. (Person)

1. Talab Budi Forged entries 4-A


Nirman Beda in muster rolls

MR No.
22252/22253
Worked for 1
day, MR entries
show 11 days,
Rs. 80 received

Worked for 5
420

days, received
Rs. 377, MR
entries show 12
days

JC No. 01, MR
No.
22260/22263
Worked for 1
week MR shows
entries shows
24 days

JC No. 225, MR
No.
22255/22257/2
2259/22262
Worked for 6
days MR entries
shows 18 days.
421
422

Group No: 5
Panchayat: Taati
Block: Angada , District : Ranchi, State- Jharkhand

S. Name of Village Nature of Comments Refere


No Work Discrepanc nce No.
. y

Jaradih Durgachara 5 -A
1. Bhadro n Lohar’s
Bedi job card
Talab Has no date
Nirman of
registration
( Job Card
No- 003/68)
Bhadro Jaradih Wages – Results in 5-B
423

2. Bedi payments people not


Talab not made at demanding
Nirman the required work
time,
usually in 30
days
3. Bhadro Jaradih Job Cards Possibilities of 5-C
Bedi with sachiv making wrong
Talab and with the entries and
Nirman workers corruption
4 Jaradih Adhanu Wages and no 5-D
Bhadro Lohara s/o of days not
Bedi Jagarnath posted in the
Talab Lohara Job Card
Nirman Job Card No
033/153
Jaradih Work This results in 5-E
5. Bhadro allocated to denial of daily
Bedi 5 individuals wages, no
Talab according to rational basis
424

Nirman chowka, but to the MR


entry in MR
according to
days of
work, which
do not
match
Bhadro Jaradih Sumitra Cannot verify 5F
6. Bedi Lohara entry in the JC
Talab worked for 7
Nirman days , paid
Rs 500, Job
Card with
Sachiv
425

Bhadro Jaradih Bhudini Devi This 5-G


7. Bedi w/o Gurjas discrepancy
Talab Bedia MR is because
Nirman No: 22674, the entries
entry of have not
registration been made
no of JC is when the
202, work was on,
whereas it and suggests
actually is malafide
147
Bhadro Jaradih Kela Oraon Amount paid 5-H
8. Bedi w/o late not entered
Talab Dom Oroan, suggests
Nirman Job Card No malafide
05, MR No:
22676,
6 days
entered in
426

the MR, paid


Rs 300 not
entered in
MR
Bhadro Jaradih Manil Suggests 5-I
9. Bedi Oroan, malafide
Talab Jagbandu
Nirman Oroan,
Langdu
Bedia,
Budaram
Bedia, Nimki
Devi,
Jagdish
Bedia,
Dbarma
Lohar,
Itwari Devi-
MR 22676
Amount paid
427

not entered
column is
blank
Jaradih Date and Suggests 5-J
10 Bhadro month not malafide
. Bedi reflected in
Talab MR No
Nirman 22675, of
Maneshwar
Bedia s/o
late
Jeevardhan
Bedia, nor in
the Job Card
( No 003/39)
11 Bhadro Jaradih Asharam 5-K
. Bedi Bedia s/o
Talab late Phool
Nirman chand Bedia
MR No:
428

22656 Job
Card 174,
entered
wrongly as
Job Card No
164

12 Mungad Discrepancy 5-L


ih between job
card and MR
22541 in
the case of
Vedana
Bedia- Job
Card 004/3
429

13 Mungad No 5-M
ih indication of
gender in
the muster
roll, no
authorized
signature of
the
concerned
authority
MR No
22543
14 Mungad Bhodana Irregularity 5-N
ih Bedia
MR No
225440
Job Card No
004/51
Entered as
430

00100
15 Kup Mungad Sohari Devi In all works 5-O
Nirman ih states she managed by
Adyaksh- worked for 6 Abhikartas,
Chaudhary days and the workers
Bedia, she was are hired by
Sachiv paid after the beneficiary
Bodhana 25 days. without going
Bedia She did not through the
apply for process of job
work under application
NREGA etc, denying
the worker the
possibilities of
rights and
redressal
under the Act
16 Kup Mungad Work Lack of 5-P
. Nirman ih suspended, awareness of
Adyaksh- reasons not the NREGA,
431

Chaudhary known. denies the


Bedia, Workers are workers the
Sachiv unaware of possibilities of
Bodhana NREGA demanding
Bedia work
17 Kup Mungad Sohari Devi Minor 5-Q
. Nirman ih MR No irregularity
Adyaksh- 22542 Job
Chaudhary Card
Bedia, 004/55 ,
Sachiv Amount paid
Bodhana as Wages
Bedia not entered
in Job Card
18 Kup Navadih Mangra Suggests 5-R
. Nirman a Oraon malafide
Shanicharv MR Nos-
a Oraon, 22627,
Adyaksh 22628,
Sukhram 22630, Job
432

Oraon Card No-


Sachiv 005/21.
Days
eneterd in
three MRs =
12 ½,
actually
worked for
18 days,
payments
received
460/- Job
Card not
with worker
19 Kup Navadih Irregularitie All muster rolls 5-S
Nirman a s in muster must be
Shanicharv rolls in publicly
a Oraon, general displayed and
Adyaksh easily
Sukhram accessible.
433

Oraon
Sachiv

20 Kup Navadih No Increase 5-T


Nirman a awareness awareness and
Shanicharv of demand innovate
a Oraon, driven methods of
Adyaksh nature of communication
Sukhram NREGA, and
Oraon therefore no
Sachiv job
applications
filed
21 Kup Navadih Many House to 5-U
Nirman a workers do house survey
Shanicharv not have job to ensure that
a Oraon, cards all workers
Adyaksh have job cards
Sukhram
Oraon
434

Sachiv

22 Kup Navadih Raju Oraon Non-payment 5-V


Nirman a worked for 6 of minimum
Shanicharv ½ days but wages
a Oraon, received
5Adyaksh Rs 400/-
Sukhram
Oraon
Sachiv

23 Kup Navadih Well dug Verify work, 5-W


Nirman a 121 feet, wages and
Shanicharv total records
a Oraon, amount
Adyaksh sanctioned
Sukhram 1, 19, 400.
Oraon Only
Sachiv 26,000/-,
worth of
435

work done
but only an
advance of
19,500/-
received.
Suspect
discrepancie
s
24 Kup Navadih Sushila Minimum 5-X
Nirman a Linda w/o wages not paid
Shanicharv Vrish Linda
a Oraon, Job Card
Adyaksh 005/28,
Sukhram worker for 5
Oraon days, no
Sachiv mention of
wages paid (
Rs 300)
436

25 Kup Navadih Dhano Irregularities 5-Y


Nirman a Oraon s/o and non
Shanicharv Etva Oraon payment of
a Oraon, MR No minimum
Adyaksh 22626, wages,
Sukhram 22628, suspect
Oraon 22630 siphoning of
Sachiv Job Card money
No18
worked for
11 days in
total, but 12
days
entered in
Job Card,
wages paid
800 not
entered in
the JC
437

26 Jaradiha Somra Bedia No knowledge 5-Z


s/o Dhunai of
Bedia Job unemployment
Card allowance
003/155,
Non
Payment of
wages has
made him
discontinue
work
27 Jaradiha Bhola Action must be 5-AA
Lohara taken for
Job Card is systematic non
with Sachiv, payment of
has worked minimum
on talaab. wages. No
Late awareness of
payment the details on
438

NREGA
28 Jaradiha Pratap Action must be 5-AB
Lohara taken for
Job Card is systematic non
with Sachiv, payment of
has worked minimum
on talaab. wages. No
Late awareness of
payment the details on
after 1 NREGA
month
29 Jaradiha Adhanu No awareness 5-AC
Lohara s/o of NREGA and
jaharnath demand driven
Lohara nature of work
Job Card No
003/153
30 Jaradiha Rijni Devi No awareness 5-AD
Job Card of NREGA and
with the demand driven
439

Sachiv, No nature of work


awareness
of NREGA.

31 Jaradiha Raghunath No awareness 5-AE


Bedia of NREGA and
Job Card No demand driven
198 nature of work
Payments
not made in
time
440

32 Jaradiha Budni Devi No awareness 5 AF


w/o Gurjas of NREGA and
Bedia, Job demand driven
Card No nature of work
147, non
payment of
wages in
time. Bribe
given of Rs
70 to 100
for opening
a Postal
Account
33 Jaradiha Bhadro All sachivs 5- AG
Bedia must be
(Adhyaksh) trained in MR
Talaab entry and
sanctioned. maintenance.
He has the There should
441

MR and the be a system


job cards for regular
are with release of
sachiv. funds for
Neither works on
have any private land
understandi
ng of
entries in
MRs. Work
stopped
because of
non-release
of funds.
Sanctioned
amount
1, 67, 200
34 Jaradiha Soma Bedia There should 5 -AH
Work closed be a system
because for regular
442

wage release of
payments funds for
are made works on
after 1 private land
month
35 Kup Jaradiha The There should 5-AI
Nirman beneficiary be a system
Ramesh ahs no for regular
Bedia knowledge release of
about MRs funds for
and work works on
had stopped private land
because of
non release
of funds and
wage
payment
has
therefore
been
443

delayed
36 Kup Mungad Chothi Systems of 5-AJ
Nirman iha Kumari NEGA
Chaudhary Job Card implementatio
Bedia with her, n on private
non wells
payment of sanctioned
minimum needs to be
wages in reviewed.
time. Work
stopped
because of
non-release
of funds.
444

37 Kup Mungad Worked for No awareness 5-AK


. Nirman iha 20- 25 days of NREGA and
Chaudhary and not paid demand driven
Bedia wages nature of work
or payment
norms.
38 Mungad Bedana No awareness 5-AL
iha Bedia of NREGA and
Wages not demand driven
paid in time. nature of work
Discrepancy or payment
between norms.
chowka and Work norms
daily wages, have to be
in work on reviewed.
talaab.
39 Kup Mungad Chaudhary Systems need 5- AM
Nirman iha Bedia and to be improved
Chaudhary Bodana
445

Bedia Bedia,
Baleshwar
Bedia
Work on
Wells
stopped
because of
lack of
funds, now
there is
water
collected in
the well, no
money to
lift the
water to
continue
work
Sanctioned
amount
446

1,19, 400/-
but received
only 15000.
40 Kup Navadih Raju Oraon, No awareness 5-AN
Nirman Job Card No of NREGA and
Seencharw 005/34 demand driven
a Oroan Non nature of work
payment of or payment
minimum norms.
wages and Work norms
delayed have to be
payments reviewed.
41 Kup Navadih Sushil Linda No awareness 5-AO
Nirman Job Card No of NREGA and
Seencharw 005/28 demand driven
a Oroan Worked 5 nature of work
days, has no or payment
information norms.
about his Work norms
card and have to be
447

has not reviewed


received full
payment
448

42 Kup Navadih Dhano No awareness 5-AP


Nirman Oroan s/o of NREGA and
Seencharw Etwah demand driven
a Oroan Oraon nature of work
Job Card No or payment
005/18 norms.
Work Work norms
entered on have to be
JC but reviewed
payments
not made on
time
43 Kup Navadih Shanichrva Work norms 5-AQ
Nirman Oroan have to be
Seencharw Job Card No reviewed.
a Oroan 005/25
Payments
not made on
time. Work
449

norms for
hard rock
must be
revised.

GENERAL COMMENTS:
1. General awareness of NREGA very low, government needs to start special drives in this
area
2. Delayed payment of wages has led workers to stay away from work denying them their
right to work guaranteed by the NREGAS
3. Illegal Gratification for opening postal accounts
4. Discrepancies between MRs and Job Cards
5. Work norms need to be revised
6. Choka and Daily wages is an issue which needs to be addressed immediately and the
policy changed
7. Training on record maintenance imperative
450

Panchayat: Paenka
Block: Angada District: Ranchi State: Jharkand

S. Name Of Village Nature of Comments Referenc


N Work Discrepanc e No
o y
1. Kup Soni Devi Minimum 9-A
Nirman Job Card wages not paid
451

Seema No-152 , MR
Oraon No-51153, 6
days
entered in
MR, 3 days
entered in
Job Card,
RS.230
pending
2. Kup Dibru Oraon Minimum 9-B
Nirman Job Card wages not paid
Seema No-111
Oraon MR No-
51152
Total 27
days
entered in
MR, 31 days
entered in
Job Card,
452

Paid
Rs.2033
3. Talab Jarga Meela Devi Wages 9-C
Nirman Job Card pending,
Domna No-192 suggests
Oraon MR No-5114 malafide
6 days
entered in
MR, 7 days
entered in
Job Card,
paid
omlyRs.400
out of
Rs.536.76
4. Talab Jarga Maniram • Payment 9-D
Nirman Mahato not given
Domna Job Card according
Oraon No-046 to
MR NO- measureme
453

51106 nt.
32 chowka • Rs.363 is
dug, due.
Worked for
23 days and
out of
Rs.1763
paid only
Rs.1400

5. Talab Jarga Bhuneshwa 9-E


Nirman r Mahto • Rs.20 is
Domna Job Card due.
Oraon No- 055
MR No-
51109
12 days
entered in
MR and 15
days
454

entered in
Job Card,
out of
Rs.1150.20
paid only
Rs.900
6. Talab Jarga Budhni Devi • Payment is 9-F
Nirman Job Card due.
Domna No- 192
Oraon Worked for
7 days but
not paid at
all.
7. Talab Jarga Agastus • Rs.447 is 9-G
Nirman Sirki due.
Domna Job Card no
Oraon 150
MR No-
51107
28 days
455

entered in
MR and 34
days
entered in
Job Card,
paid only
Rs.1700

General Comments

1. Villagers are not being paid according to the prescribed scale of measurement.
2. Serious lapses in the implementation of spreading of awareness about the Act.
3. In village Jarga posters spreading awareness about NREGA and RTI were put up just 3
days before the social audit.

4. Job Cards were mostly with the abhikarta/sevak.

5. The abhikarta and the gram sevak are not trained and aware about the Act.
456

Panchayat: Sursu
Block:Angada District: Ranchi State: Jharkand

S. Name of Village Nature of Comme Referen


No Work Discrepanc nts ce No
y
1. Kup Sukhu Work is • According 7-A
Nirmaan done by all to the Act
Yugal the the name of
Rjvar members of the person
the family working
but the must be
entries are entered in
made in the the MR and
457

name of the Job Card.


head of the • In case
family. someone
whose
name is not
entered on
the MR
hurts
themselves
on the
worksite
then the
process of
giving
medical aid
gets
complicated
.
2. Kup Sukhu Kari Devi Suggests 7-B
Nirmaan Job Card malafide
458

Yugal No-163
Rjvar MR No-505
Worked for
8 days,
attendance
entered in
the
attendance
register but
no entry on
the MR.
3. Talab Sarlu Babita • Case of 7-C
Nirman Kumari corruption.
Daroga MR No-
Rjvar 51890
6 days
entered in
the job card
but has
never gone
459

for work
and is
studying in
class 6th.
460

4. Talab Sarlu Radheshya • Underpaym 7-D


Nirman m Rajvar ent
Daroga MR No- • Disparity
Rjvar 51877 between
6 days the MR and
entered in the Job
the MR and Card.
was paid
Rs.258 but
was not
entered in
the Job
Card.
5. Talab Sarlu Jaychand Disparities 7-E
Nirman Bedia between the
Daroga Job Card Job Card and
Rjvar No-207 the MR.
Entered 3
chowka in
461

Job Card
and 4
Chowka in
MR
6. Talab Sarlu MR is not Could cause 7-F
Nirman present at false entries.
Daroga the
Rjvar worksite.

General Comments

1. Old job Cards where column of amount is not present is used extensively.
2. Lot of disparities between the MRs and the Job Cards.
3. Persistent problem of delayed payment and under payment.
4. Lack of sufficient staff.
462

Panchayat: Bongai Beda


Block: Angada; District: Ranchi; State: Jharkhand

S. Name of Villag Nature of Comments Refere


No Work - OR e Discrepancy nce No.
. (Person)

1. Ettwa Banpu Muster rolls 6-A


Tigga r filled a month
Kup Fateh before the work
Nirman Toli actually started.
(M R No –
50241)

2. Chanlal Bongai i. Payment 6-B


Lohra beda not made
Talab on time.
Nirman ii. False entry
in muster
463

roll
iii. Kunti Devi
had
supplied
water for 30
days in the
work-site
but never
been paid

i. Fake entries
3. Miti Banpu in muster 6-C
morem r roll
road from ii. Underpaym
Sarandipa ent of
to Banpur labour
i. Fake entries
4. Bansi Tanta in muster 6-D
Oraon Toli roll and job One of the
Kup card laborers
464

Nirman (MR No – received


50151, payment in the
50152) gram sabha
ii. Non organized on 20
payment of May 2007
wages.
465

Panchayat: Murhi
Block: Khunti; District: Ranchi; State: Jharkhand

S. Name of Village Nature of Comments Refere


No Work - OR Discrepanc nce No.
. (Person) y

1. Tirla Devi Terom Contractor Group –


Kup used for 11
Nirman carrying out
the work
Delayed
payment
(MR No –
127317,
127318,
466

127321)

2. Talab Dabgana Work stopped Group –


Nirman due to 11
delayed
payment

3. Talab Bandh Inflated Group –


Maramat Toli entries in the 11
Muster Roll
(MR No -
109670,
109669)
(MR No -
2601, 2602,
2605, 2622,
2636)

4. Khudia Barkargi People are Group –


Munda migrating 11
467

from the
village
Due to delay
in release of
fund he has
mortgaged
his land to
pay the wage
Luila Munda Hesag Expenses
5. Irrigation increased due Group –
Well to finding of 11
stone
beneath the
surface

Panchayat: Siladon
Block: Khunti; District: Ranchi; State: Jharkhand
468

S. Name of Villag Nature of Comments Refere


No Work - OR e Discrepancy nce No.
. (Person)

1. Kishtochit Barudi i. No wages


Munda have been MR No.
Talab paid for 127668
Nirman over a
month
ii. Work
started
even
though
many
workers
were
without job
cards
469

2. Sirva Latrju Work started in MR No.


Munda ng February and 127735
Kuan job cards were
Nirman made in April.

3. Sukhram Kumku Estimate for


Munda ma work Rs.
Talab 3,92,000 but
Nirman the worksite
board displayed
the work
estimate as Rs. MR No.
1,69,200 127789

Job card was


with the
Panchayat
470

sewak for 10
months.
Three works
sanctioned,
while there was
no demand for
work.

4. Birsa Potom Job card was MR No.


Munda Gada with the 127951
Kup Pradhan for 3
Nirman months 127952

5. Fugu Chukr Pradhan is the MR No.


Singh u beneficiary of 127716
Munda the scheme.
Talab The block office
Nirman said that the
talab should be
built first as the
471

office has
received orders
for only 2 works
and this work is
to be carried
out first. Even
though this
work was
number 5 on
the list of works
decided by the
gram sabha.
472

6. Sunder Chitra The junior


Munda mu engineer (JE)
Talab has not come
Nirman to take
measurement
of work even
once, since
the work
started 3
months ago.
Written
Muster rolls testimony of
filled a month beneficiary
before the enclosed.
work actually
started.
(Details
enclosed)
473

The
Beneficiary
and workers
had to pay Rs.
300 to the
panchayat
sewak to
carry out
measurement
of work. Even
after paying a
bribe, the
junior
engineer (JE),
who is
supposed to
carry out
measurement
s did not do
so, the
474

panchayat
sewak did.

7. Guslu Karge False entries


Munda in
Talab measurement
Nirman book. (Details
enclosed)
475

Remta Names of 10
8. woman
Talab workers were
Nirman struck off the
muster roll.
Workers have
to take care
of their own
drinking water
needs. The
block office
says that the
work
estimates
have no
provisions for
a worker on
the site to
provide
476

drinking
water.

9. Soma Sauda A new work


Munda gh for talab
Talab nirman was
Nirman sanctioned
where an old
talab already
exists. The
total estimate
for this work
is Rs.
3,16,600
(Details
enclosed)

GENERAL COMMENTS:
477

1. In all 13 villages in this panchayat wages have not been paid for works for more than a
month since the work began.
2. Workers have stopped going to the worksite.
3. As a result all works have stopped.
4. In 3-6 villages the beneficiary is also the pradhan of the village
5. Mates have not been appointed.
6. No muster rolls available on worksites, the beneficiary fills out the muster rolls at
home.
7. Lack of awareness about the NREGA
478

Panchayat: Karge
Block: Mandar; District: Ranchi; State: Jharkhand

S. Name of Villag Nature of Comments Refere


No Work - OR e Discrepancy nce No.
. (Person)
Sakal Rege i. Misappropriati [Details of
1. Oraon on through proceedings of 14-A
Kuan inflated the gram sabha
Nirman entries in are also
muster roll attached]
ii. Fake
signatures on
muster rolls.
Sukra Karge i. Fake and This is an 14-B
2. Oraon inflated extremely
Kuan entries in important
Nirman muster rolls. instance of the
479

ii. Written person


statement by concerned
the Secretary, testifying
Balindra about his
Gope, that he dilemma. It
was forced to also shows
make false how the
entries in beneficiary
order to pay a committees
percentage to are caught
the block between the
level officials. block officials
iii. The Secretary and the people
was they employ.
threatened This must be
and asked to taken
retract his seriously,
statement. investigated
iv. This whole properly, and
matter came the Secretary
480

up both at the testifying must


village gram be assured of
sabha as well protection and
as the block his full
level meeting. security. If an
At the block example is
level meeting made of this
the Secretary case, then one
testified and of the
stood by his important
statement hidden root
that he was cause of
forced to give embezzlement
a commission and
and was exploitation
being can be tackled.
threatened
about making [Written
this testimony of
statement Secretary
481

attached]

[Details of
proceedings of
the gram sabha
are also
attached]

3. Gandru Rege i. Kucha muster 14-C


Pahan roll found on Photocopies of
Kuan the worksite. kuccha muster
Nirman ii. Huge rolls attached
differences
found in [Details of
kucha and proceedings of
pucca muster the gram sabha
roll. are also
iii. Muster rolls attached]
forged.
482

iv. Discrepancies
in
measurement
of work.

i. Muster roll
4. Mahesh Hatma created and [Details of 14-D
Pahan filled out proceedings of
Kuan before work the gram sabha
Nirman started are also
ii. Muster rolls attached]
forged.

5. Shiv Oraon Karge i. Muster roll 14-E


Kuan not available
Nirman on worksite This is one work
ii. One worker where there was
shown as material used
working on 2 and the bills
483

worksites the were inflated.


same day. Therefore,
iii. Fake entries means of
in muster monitoring
rolls. material
iv. 2 wells with expenditure also
two boards needs to be
and thought about.
measuremen
t book There was an
entries attempt by block
showing 2 officials to
wells exist, explain away the
whereas double entries
there is only for one well,
1 well. including the 2
v. Duplicate measurement
muster rolls book entries as
available for being a result of
the same one
484

work. measurement
vi. Inflated book not being
entries in available at that
muster rolls. time. However, it
False was also clear at
signatures the gram sabha
put on the that the second
muster rolls. well had still not
vii. Inflated been cancelled
material bills and the
shown. existence of
double entries in
this manner
seems very
suspicious and
must be
thoroughly
investigated by
an independent
authority.
485

[Details of
proceedings of
the gram sabha
are also
attached]

6. Talab Hatma i. Same worker The same 14-F


Nirman shown in the worker being on
muster roll 2 worksites on
working on the same day
two worksites must be taken
the same as adequate
day. proof of
ii. Several corruption and
workers the changing
shown as explanations
working for that were
two days on offered at the
different gram sabha that
486

worksites in the worker first


the same went to one
week. worksite and
then another is
unacceptable.

[Details of
proceedings of
the gram sabha
are also
attached]

7. Mangu Karge i. Inflated [Details of 14-G


Oraon entries in proceedings of
Kuan muster the gram sabha
Nirman roll. are also
attached]

8.
Budhu Tangra i. Workers This was a visit 14-H
487

Oraon Toli who to a site outside


Kuan shared of the social
Nirman informatio audit schedule.
n with the
social [Details of
audit proceedings of
team the gram sabha
were later are also
beaten up attached]
by the
Secretary.

GENERAL COMMENTS:

1. The gram sabha in this panchayat was attended in large numbers by villagers, several of
whom applied for work and said they were not aware that they had to apply for work.
488

2. A disabled person, a pregnant mother and a blind man were turned away from work. At
the gram sabha the block officials said that they would provide them with work.
3. The Secretary was not present at the gram sabha as he had been warned to stay away.
However, he did attend the block level meeting the next day.

Panchayat: Malti
Block: Mandar; District: Ranchi; State: Jharkhand

S.N Name of Village Nature of Comments Reference


o. Work - OR Discrepancy No.
(Person)

1. Grade 1 Chatwa i. 31 workers This gram sabha on 15-A


Morem road l were shown the 20 May 2007 [Joint
nirman- From as working showed some of the complaint
Aslam’s for 54 days. challenges that exist fo 25
house to And 10 in institutionalizing workers
489

Jamal’s house workers the social audit and


were shown process. There was written
as working a complaint made individual
for 30 days. against the social complaint
However, audit team saying s of 7
most that they had workers]
workers offered money to See also
have given people to testify group
written that they had report,
testimonies worked for fewer enclosed
(enclosed) days. There were
and also repeated attempts to
spoken on shout down the
the day of social audit team as
the gram well as those
sabha that testifying.
they were Unfortunately
employed people from the
for periods block office seemed
490

between 1 to be openly
and a half to supporting the
10 days. beneficiary over
Only a leading the attempt
couple of to suppress the
workers testimonies. The
testified that complaint made by
they worked the beneficiary was
for the full read out aloud by a
period and block official, and
they were although there was
unable to no one wiling to
recall how come out and testify
many days in support of the
that was. complaint, seemed
ii. There was to indicate
an attempt complicity of the
to suppress block officials with
people and some of the wring
491

ensure they doings. Unless


did not space is provided
testify. for people to speak
iii. Workers openly such
complained processes of social
that they audit will be
were forced undermined.
to sign on
blank
muster
rolls.
iv. Workers
only
received
wages
according to
the number
of days they
actually
492

worked.

2. Basanti Beck Malti i. When the 15-B


Reinforced social audit [Deciding a work
Concrete team without prior
Cement Well arrived for consent of the gram
inspection sabha is a grave
of work at violation of the act
the site, and warrants
they were immediate action
informed against the block
that the officials. This is
work was happening on a
complete. large scale but since
ii. This work this issue was
had not discussed in Malti it
been is especially
decided by important that an
the gram inquiry must be
493

sabha but initiated to find out


was carried the motives of the
out under officials in charge
direction for pushing this
from the work.]
block office
without
prior
consent of
the gram
sabha.
iii. False
entries in
muster rolls
and job
cards.
iv. Job cards
were with
the
494

Secretary
even after
the work
was
completed.
v. The
Secretary
decided
which
labourers
were to be
employed
and for how
many days.

i. Fake job
Other issues cards for It is clear that 15- C
Rs. 50 were people are not [Minutes
also sold by familiar with the of Gram
495

a Amina process of sabha]


Khatun demanding work.
ii. Workers As soon as they got
wanted an opportunity to
work, but demand work and
there were fill forma\s they
no line dup in large
applications numbers to do so.
for work This is true of all
available. the panchayats
This where the social
became audit teams went.
clear when
all the
applications
for work
that the
social audit
team carried
496

with them,
got filled up
by people
on the day
of the social
audit, and
there were
no more
forms
available
either with
the
panchayat
secretary or
the block
officials.
497

Panchayat: Urugutu
Block: Kanke; District: Ranchi; State: Jharkhand

S. Name of Village Nature of Comments Refere


No Work - OR Discrepanc nce No.
. (Person) y
498

1. Talab Under Written 1-A


Nirman payment of testimony
(Raju labour. enclosed
Mahto)

2. (Rabul Demanding Written 1-B


Ansari) work but not testimony
getting it. enclosed

3. (Sabila Not getting Written 1-C


Khatun) job card and testimony
therefore not enclosed
getting work

4. (Guljari 2 job cards Written 1-D


Lohra) between one testimony
husband and enclosed
wife
[Note: 2 jobs
Late/under cards between
499

payment of husband and


wages wife violates
nuclear family
concept given
in the GOI
guidelines]

5. Devendra Urugutu Wages not Joint written 1-E


Mehli paid for 6 testimony of 10
Kuan weeks. & workers
Nirman enclosed.
Under
payment of Joint written
wages. testimony of 6
workers
enclosed.

6. Lakshmi Urugutu Beneficiary’s Written 1-F


Lohra lack of testimony
Talab awareness enclosed.
500

Nirman about
procedures.
Not giving
work to
disabled.

7. Lakshmi Urugutu Injury at Written 1-G


Lohra worksite but testimony
Talab no medical enclosed.
Nirman treatment
given.

8. Budan Mehdi Non payment Written 1-G


Munda of wages testimony
Kuan enclosed.
Nirman

9. Baleshwar Non payment Written 1-G


Pahan of wages testimony
501

Kuam enclosed.
Nirman

10. Kuan Non payment Written 1-H


Nirman of wages. testimony
Where wages enclosed.
were paid it
was less than
the minimum
wages.
No medical kit
and shade on
worksite.

11. Talab Urugutu Serious Written 1-I


Nirman irregularities testimony of
in job cards, Sachiv
maintaining (Secretary)
502

of records enclosed.
etc.

12. (Jatru Under Written 1-J


Oroan) payment of testimony
wages. enclosed

13. Desai Mehdi Under Written 1-K


Munda payment of testimony of 7
Kuan wages. workers
Nirman enclosed.

14. Talab Mehdi Extra Written 1-L


Nirman payment for testimony of
excavation of many labour
hard rock not enclosed.
being made.

15. (Mangri Mehdi Mistreatment Written 1-M


503

Devi) of TB patient testimony


and non enclosed.
payment of
wages to his
wife for work
done.

16. (Yakub Mehdi Not giving Written 1-N


Ansari) & work to testimony
(Kani Devi) disabled enclosed.
person. [Note: The ACT
requires 3%
expenditure
for disabled
people]

17. (Itwari Mehdi Injury at Written 1-O


Devi) worksite but testimony
no medical enclosed
treatment
504

given.

18. Kalinder No entries on Written 1-P


Munda job card. testimony
Kuan Underpaymen enclosed
Nirman t of wages.

19. Ijai Munda Fake muster Written 1-Q


Kuan roll entry and testimony
Nirman defalcation of enclosed.
a workers
wages.

20. Panchu Mehdi False entries 1-R


Munda in muster Written
Talab rolls. testimony
Nirman Problem with enclosed. (six
post office testimonies)
entries.
505

21. Panchu Mehdi Injury at Written 1-S


Munda worksite but testimony
Talab no treatment. enclosed (three
Nirman testimonies).

GENERAL COMMENTS:

1. Job card irregularities.


2. Post office payment irregularities
3. Work not provided to disabled persons.
4. Delayed payments.
5. Injured not provided medical aid on the worksite.

Panchayat: Rahda
Block: Kanke; District: Ranchi; State: Jharkhand
506

S. Name of Villag Nature of Comments Refere


No Work - OR e Discrepancy nce No.
. (Person)

1. Vishnu Samud i. Records During the social 2-A


Oraon ah including audit the
Land muster rolls beneficiary
leveling filled out (labhuk) refused
from an to show his
earlier date records and ran
but work away.
started
later. Delayed
ii. Muster rolls, payments and
job card and even though
first aid box there is money
not in the bank, in
available at the beneficiary’s
worksite. account,
iii. Entries not labourers are
507

made in job not being paid.


card.
iv. No worksite
boards.
v. Woman
worker
shown on
muster roll
but no
woman had
come to
work.
vi. Child labour
(under 18)
employed
on this
worksite.

2. Surendra Balwa i. Delayed 2-B


508

Oraon pani wage


Talab payments
Nirman ii. No crèche
although
there are
young
children.

3. Sawna Madan i. Due to not For the work 2-C


Oraon pur receiving done so far the
Land the next labourers
levling installment statement and
from the the muster roll
block office, and the job card
work has matched
been
stopped.
Panchayat: Kokdoro
Block: Kanke; District: Ranchi; State: Jharkhand
509

S. Name of Village Nature of Comments Refere


No Work -OR Discrepanc nce No.
. (Person) y

1. Dhodak Kokdoro Double Relates to 7 3-A


Munda entries in workers
Talab muster rolls Being shown as
Nirman (details working on the
attached) same day.

2. Dhodak Kokdoro Worksite Despite there 3- B


Munda facilities being more than
Talab 5 children on the
Nirman worksite there
was no crèche.
Children were
tied to the backs
510

of women while
they were
working.

3. Dukhan ChoubeK Role & 1.Due to late 3-C


Oraon hatenga problems of payments to
Kuan the the
Nirman beneficiary. beneficiary
workers
have not
been paid on
time and the
beneficiary
himself
seems to be
under the
control of a
person who
has not
official
511

relationship
to the work.
2.There is
video
recording of
the
beneficiary’s
statement,
which can be
provided.

4. Chuni Okharga False entry in The worker 3-D


Pahan da Job card and concerned has
Kup muster roll neither been
Nirman (details paid for the work
attached). done and has
been shown
working on the
muster roll
before the work
512

actually began.

5. Suma Okharga Fake entries Except for one 3-E


Oraon da in muster roll. regular worker
Land (details and two others
leveling enclosed) who have done a
little bit of work,
the other people
whose names
are entered in
the muster roll
do not seem to
have worked on
the site.

6. Suma Okharga Role & The beneficiary 3-F


Oraon da problems of is under the
Land the control of 2
leveling beneficiary. persons who
have no official
513

relationship to
the work.
(Details
enclosed)

7. Jagannath Okharga Fake entries 3-G


Pahan da in muster roll.
Land (details
leveling enclosed)

8. Jagannath Okharga Inflated Workers were 3-H


Pahan da entries in under paid for
Land muster rolls the work done,
leveling (details as well as
enclosed) inflated entries
were made on
the muster roll,
showing them as
having worked
514

for more days


than they
actually did.

9. Dukhu Chetar Muster rolls Names of 3-I


Pahan filled from a several workers
Kup date well who testified to
Nirman before the the teams are
work actually given.
started.
(Details
enclosed)

GENERAL COMMENTS:

1. All the vigilance committees were clearly just on paper with no actual participation or
understanding of their role.
2. Money was demanded from workers for making job cards.
3. Several blank job cards with no entries made despite workers having gone to work and
received wages. [one copy enclosed]
515

4. In village Okhargada, the villagers and the social audit team were threatened from
testifying, prevented from attending the gram sabha and warned against continuing the
social audit process.
516

Panchayat: Paenka
Block: Angada District: Ranchi State: Jharkand

S. Name Of Village Nature of Comments Referenc


N Work Discrepanc e No
o y
1 Kup Soni Devi Minimum 9-A
. Nirman Job Card wages not paid
Seema No-152 , MR
Oraon No-51153, 6
days
entered in
MR, 3 days
entered in
Job Card,
RS.230
pending
2. Kup Dibru Oraon Minimum 9-B
517

Nirman Job Card wages not paid


Seema No-111
Oraon MR No-
51152
Total 27
days
entered in
MR, 31 days
entered in
Job Card,
Paid
Rs.2033
3. Talab Jarga Meela Devi Wages 9-C
Nirman Job Card pending,
Domna No-192 suggests
Oraon MR No-5114 malafide
6 days
entered in
MR, 7 days
entered in
518

Job Card,
paid
omlyRs.400
out of
Rs.536.76
4. Talab Jarga Maniram • Payment 9-D
Nirman Mahato not given
Domna Job Card according
Oraon No-046 to
MR NO- measureme
51106 nt.
32 chowka • Rs.363 is
dug, due.
Worked for
23 days and
out of
Rs.1763
paid only
Rs.1400
519

5. Talab Jarga Bhuneshwa 9-E


Nirman r Mahto • Rs.20 is
Domna Job Card due.
Oraon No- 055
MR No-
51109
12 days
entered in
MR and 15
days
entered in
Job Card,
out of
Rs.1150.20
paid only
Rs.900
6. Talab Jarga Budhni Devi • Payment is 9-F
Nirman Job Card due.
Domna No- 192
520

Oraon Worked for


7 days but
not paid at
all.
7. Talab Jarga Agastus • Rs.447 is 9-G
Nirman Sirki due.
Domna Job Card no
Oraon 150
MR No-
51107
28 days
entered in
MR and 34
days
entered in
Job Card,
paid only
Rs.1700

General Comments
521

1. Villagers are not being paid according to the prescribed scale of measurement.
2. Serious lapses in the implementation of spreading of awareness about the Act.
3. In village Jarga posters spreading awareness about NREGA and RTI were put up just 3
days before the social audit.
4. Job Cards were mostly with the abhikarta/sevak.
5. The abhikarta and the gram sevak are not trained and aware about the Act.

Panchayat: Sursu
Block:Angada District: Ranchi State: Jharkand
522

S. Name of Village Nature of Comme Referen


No Work Discrepanc nts ce No
y

1. Kup Sukhu Work is • According 7-A


Nirmaan done by all to the Act
Yugal the the name of
Rjvar members of the person
the family working
but the must be
entries are entered in
made in the the MR and
name of the Job Card.
head of the • In case
family. someone
whose
name is not
entered on
the MR
hurts
523

themselves
on the
worksite
then the
process of
giving
medical aid
gets
complicated
.
2. Kup Sukhu Kari Devi Suggests 7-B
Nirmaan Job Card malafide
Yugal No-163
Rjvar MR No-505
Worked for
8 days,
attendance
entered in
the
attendance
524

register but
no entry on
the MR.
3. Talab Sarlu Babita • Case of 7-C
Nirman Kumari corruption.
Daroga MR No-
Rjvar 51890
6 days
entered in
the job card
but has
never gone
for work
and is
studying in
class 6th.
4. Talab Sarlu Radheshya • Underpaym 7-D
Nirman m Rajvar ent
Daroga MR No- • Disparity
Rjvar 51877 between
525

6 days the MR and


entered in the Job
the MR and Card.
was paid
Rs.258 but
was not
entered in
the Job
Card.
5. Talab Sarlu Jaychand Disparities 7-E
Nirman Bedia between the
Daroga Job Card Job Card and
Rjvar No-207 the MR.
Entered 3
chowka in
Job Card
and 4
Chowka in
MR
6. Talab Sarlu MR is not Could cause 7-F
526

Nirman present at false entries.


Daroga the
Rjvar worksite.

General Comments

1. Old job Cards where column of amount is not present is used extensively.
2. Lot of disparities between the MRs and the Job Cards.
3. Persistent problem of delayed payment and under payment.
4. Lack of sufficient and efficient staff.
527

Panchayat: Sataki
Block:Angada District: Ranchi State: Jharkand

S. Name Of Village Nature of Comments Referenc


N Work Discrepanc e No
o y
1. Talab Sataki Shrikant Suggests 8-A
nirmaan Oraon malafide.
Chunni MR No-
Singh 10399
Munda Job Card
No-3/5
6 days
entered in
528

the MR but
no entry
made in the
Job Card.
2. Talab Sataki Ram Rai Rs.126 is due. 8-B
nirmaan Munda
Chunni Job Card
Singh No-3/34
Munda MR NO-
51356
Worked for
16 days but
was paid
only
Rs.1100 out
of Rs.1236
3. Kup Kankat Balram Disparity 8-C
Nirmaan ta Oraon s/o between the
Sukhram Nando amount
Oraon Oraon entered in the
529

Job Card job card and


No-1/133 muster roll.
MR No-
25221
Worked for
3 ½ days
but entered
as 4 days in
Job Card
4. Kup Kankat Dalgovind Fake MR 8-D
Nirmaan ta Oraon s/o entries
Sukhram Sukhram
Oraon Oraon
Job Card
No- 1/127
MR No-
25223
Thumb
impression
is on the
530

MR but the
worker is
able to
sign.

General Comments

1. Payment delayed due to which the work was suspended (Kup Nirmaan- Kanta
Toli).
2. MR not present at the work site (Talab Nirmaan- Kankatta).
3. Lack of awareness about the Act amongst the villagers and the staff.
4. Signatures of workers are taken on plain sheet (while giving payment) instead
of the MR.
5. Job Cards are not with the labourers.
6. 17 families in Kanta Tola and Kankatta do not have a Job Card (list attached).
531

Panchayat: Kokdoro
Block: Kanke; District: Ranchi; State: Jharkhand

S. Name of Village Nature of Comments Refere


No Work -OR Discrepanc nce No.
. (Person) y

1. Dhodak Kokdoro Double Relates to 7 3-A


Munda entries in workers
Talab muster rolls Being shown as
Nirman (details working on the
attached) same day.

2. Dhodak Kokdoro Worksite Despite there 3- B


Munda facilities being more than
Talab 5 children on the
532

Nirman worksite there


was no crèche.
Children were
tied to the backs
of women while
they were
working.

3. Dukhan ChoubeK Role & 3.Due to late 3-C


Oraon hatenga problems of payments to
Kuan the the
Nirman beneficiary. beneficiary
workers
have not
been paid on
time and the
beneficiary
himself
seems to be
under the
533

control of a
person who
has not
official
relationship
to the work.
4.There is
video
recording of
the
beneficiary’s
statement,
which can be
provided.

4. Chuni Okharga False entry in The worker 3-D


Pahan da Job card and concerned has
Kup muster roll neither been
Nirman (details paid for the work
attached). done and has
534

been shown
working on the
muster roll
before the work
actually began.

5. Suma Okharga Fake entries Except for one 3-E


Oraon da in muster roll. regular worker
Land (details and two others
leveling enclosed) who have done a
little bit of work,
the other people
whose names
are entered in
the muster roll
do not seem to
have worked on
the site.
6.
Suma Okharga Role & The beneficiary 3-F
535

Oraon da problems of is under the


Land the control of 2
leveling beneficiary. persons who
have no official
relationship to
the work.
(Details
enclosed)

7. Jagannath Okharga Fake entries 3-G


Pahan da in muster roll.
Land (details
leveling enclosed)

Jagannath
8. Pahan Okharga Inflated Workers were 3-H
Land da entries in under paid for
leveling muster rolls the work done,
(details as well as
536

enclosed) inflated entries


were made on
the muster roll,
showing them as
having worked
for more days
than they
actually did.

9. Dukhu Chetar Muster rolls Names of 3-I


Pahan filled from a several workers
Kup date well who testified to
Nirman before the the teams are
work actually given.
started.
(Details
enclosed)

GENERAL COMMENTS:
537

1. All the vigilance committees were clearly just on paper with no actual participation or
understanding of their role.
2. Money was demanded from workers for making job cards.
3. Several blank job cards with no entries made despite workers having gone to work and
received wages. [one copy enclosed]
4. In village Okhargada, the villagers and the social audit team were threatened from
testifying, prevented from attending the gram sabha and warned against continuing the
social audit process.
538

Panchayat: Urugutu
Block: Kanke; District: Ranchi; State: Jharkhand

S. Name of Village Nature of Comments Refere


No Work - OR Discrepanc nce No.
. (Person) y

1. Talab Under Written 1-A


Nirman payment of testimony
(Raju labour. enclosed
Mahto)

2. (Rabul Demanding Written 1-B


Ansari) work but not testimony
getting it. enclosed
539

3. (Sabila Not getting Written 1-C


Khatun) job card and testimony
therefore not enclosed
getting work

4. (Guljari 2 job cards Written 1-D


Lohra) between one testimony
husband and enclosed
wife
[Note: 2 jobs
Late/under cards between
payment of husband and
wages wife violates
nuclear family
concept given
in the GOI
guidelines]

5. Devendra Urugutu Wages not Joint written 1-E


540

Mehli paid for 6 testimony of 10


Kuan weeks. & workers
Nirman enclosed.

Under
payment of Joint written
wages. testimony of 6
workers
enclosed.
541

6. Lakshmi Urugutu Beneficiary’s Written 1-F


Lohra lack of testimony
Talab awareness enclosed.
Nirman about
procedures.
Not giving
work to
disabled.

7. Lakshmi Urugutu Injury at Written 1-G


Lohra worksite but testimony
Talab no medical enclosed.
Nirman treatment
given.

8. Budan Mehdi Non payment Written 1-G


Munda of wages testimony
Kuan enclosed.
542

Nirman

9. Baleshwar Non payment Written 1-G


Pahan of wages testimony
Kuam enclosed.
Nirman

10 Kuan Non payment Written 1-H


. Nirman of wages. testimony
Where wages enclosed.
were paid it
was less than
the minimum
wages.
No medical kit
and shade on
worksite.
543

11 Talab Urugutu Serious Written 1-I


. Nirman irregularities testimony of
in job cards, Sachiv
maintaining (Secretary)
of records enclosed.
etc.

12 (Jatru Under Written 1-J


. Oroan) payment of testimony
wages. enclosed
544

13 Desai Mehdi Under Written 1-K


. Munda payment of testimony of 7
Kuan wages. workers
Nirman enclosed.

14 Talab Mehdi Extra Written 1-L


. Nirman payment for testimony of
excavation of many labour
hard rock not enclosed.
being made.

15 (Mangri Mehdi Mistreatment Written 1-M


. Devi) of TB patient testimony
and non enclosed.
payment of
wages to his
wife for work
545

done.

16 (Yakub Mehdi Not giving Written 1-N


. Ansari) & work to testimony
(Kani Devi) disabled enclosed.
person. [Note: The ACT
requires 3%
expenditure
fro disabled
people]

17 (Itwari Mehdi Injury at Written 1-O


. Devi) worksite but testimony
no medical enclosed
treatment
given.

18 Kalinder No entries on Written 1-P


. Munda job card. testimony
Kuan Underpaymen enclosed
546

Nirman t of wages.

19 Ijai Munda Fake muster Written 1-Q


. Kuan roll entry and testimony
Nirman defalcation of enclosed.
a workers
wages.

20 Panchu Mehdi False entries 1-R


. Munda in muster Written
Talab rolls. testimony
Nirman Problem with enclosed. (six
post office testimonies)
entries.

21 Panchu Mehdi Injury at Written 1-S


. Munda worksite but testimony
Talab no treatment. enclosed (three
Nirman testimonies).
547

GENERAL COMMENTS:

1. Job card irregularities.


2. Post office payment irregularities
3. Work not provided to disabled persons.
4. Delayed payments.
5. Injured not provided medical aid on the worksite.
548

Panchayat: Rahda
Block: Kanke; District: Ranchi; State: Jharkhand

S. Name of Villag Nature of Comments Refere


No Work - OR e Discrepancy nce No.
. (Person)

1. Vishnu Samud vii. Records During the social 2-A


Oraon ah including audit the
Land muster rolls beneficiary
leveling filled out (labhuk) refused
from an to show his
earlier date records and ran
but work away.
started
later. Delayed
viii. Muster rolls, payments and
job card and even though
549

first aid box there is money


not in the bank, in
available at the beneficiary’s
worksite. account,
ix. Entries not labourers are
made in job not being paid.
card.
x. No worksite
boards.
xi. Woman
worker
shown on
muster roll
but no
woman had
come to
work.
xii. Child labour
(under 18)
employed
550

on this
worksite.

2. Surendra Balwa iii. Delayed 2-B


Oraon pani wage
Talab payments
Nirman iv. No crèche
although
there are
young
children.
551

3. Sawna Madan ii. Due to not For the work 2-C


Oraon pur receiving done so far the
Land the next labourers
levling installment statement and
from the the muster roll
block office, and the job card
work has matched
been
stopped.
Panchayat: Karge
Block: Mandar; District: Ranchi; State: Jharkhand

S. Name of Villag Nature of Comments Refere


No Work - OR e Discrepancy nce No.
. (Person)

1. Sakal Rege iii. Misappropriati [Details of 14-A


552

Oraon on through proceedings of


Kuan inflated the gram sabha
Nirman entries in are also
muster roll attached]
iv. Fake
signatures on
muster rolls.

2. Sukra Karge v. Fake and This is an 14-B


Oraon inflated extremely
Kuan entries in important
Nirman muster rolls. instance of the
vi. Written person
statement by concerned
the Secretary, testifying
Balindra about his
Gope, that he dilemma. It
was forced to also shows
make false how the
entries in beneficiary
553

order to pay a committees


percentage to are caught
the block between the
level officials. block officials
vii. The Secretary and the people
was they employ.
threatened This must be
and asked to taken
retract his seriously,
statement. investigated
viii. This whole properly, and
matter came the Secretary
up both at the testifying must
village gram be assured of
sabha as well protection and
as the block his full
level meeting. security. If an
At the block example is
level meeting made of this
the Secretary case, then one
554

testified and of the


stood by his important
statement hidden root
that he was cause of
forced to give embezzlement
a commission and
and was exploitation
being can be tackled.
threatened
about making [Written
this testimony of
statement Secretary
attached]

[Details of
proceedings of
the gram sabha
are also
attached]
555

3. Gandru Rege v. Kucha muster 14-C


Pahan roll found on Photocopies of
Kuan the worksite. kuccha muster
Nirman vi. Huge rolls attached
differences
found in [Details of
kucha and proceedings of
pucca muster the gram sabha
roll. are also
vii. Muster rolls attached]
forged.
viii. Discrepancies
in
measurement
of work.

iii. Muster roll


4. Mahesh Hatma created and [Details of 14-D
Pahan filled out proceedings of
556

Kuan before work the gram sabha


Nirman started are also
iv. Muster rolls attached]
forged.

5. Shiv Oraon Karge viii. Muster roll 14-E


Kuan not available
Nirman on worksite This is one work
ix. One worker where there was
shown as material used
working on 2 and the bills
worksites the were inflated.
same day. Therefore,
x. Fake entries means of
in muster monitoring
rolls. material
xi. 2 wells with expenditure also
two boards needs to be
and thought about.
557

measuremen
t book There was an
entries attempt by block
showing 2 officials to
wells exist, explain away the
whereas double entries
there is only for one well,
1 well. including the 2
xii. Duplicate measurement
muster rolls book entries as
available for being a result of
the same one
work. measurement
xiii. Inflated book not being
entries in available at that
muster rolls. time. However, it
False was also clear at
signatures the gram sabha
put on the that the second
muster rolls. well had still not
558

xiv. Inflated been cancelled


material bills and the
shown. existence of
double entries in
this manner
seems very
suspicious and
must be
thoroughly
investigated by
an independent
authority.

[Details of
proceedings of
the gram sabha
are also
attached]
559

6. Talab Hatma iii. Same worker The same 14-F


Nirman shown in the worker being on
muster roll 2 worksites on
working on the same day
two worksites must be taken
the same as adequate
day. proof of
iv. Several corruption and
workers the changing
shown as explanations
working for that were
two days on offered at the
different gram sabha that
worksites in the worker first
the same went to one
week. worksite and
then another is
unacceptable.
560

[Details of
proceedings of
the gram sabha
are also
attached]

7. Mangu Karge ii. Inflated [Details of 14-G


Oraon entries in proceedings of
Kuan muster the gram sabha
Nirman roll. are also
attached]

8. Budhu Tangra ii. Workers This was a visit 14-H


Oraon Toli who to a site outside
Kuan shared of the social
Nirman informatio audit schedule.
n with the
social [Details of
audit proceedings of
561

team the gram sabha


were later are also
beaten up attached]
by the
Secretary.

GENERAL COMMENTS:

1. The gram sabha in this panchayat was attended in large numbers by villagers, several of
whom applied for work and said they were not aware that they had to apply for work.
2. A disabled person, a pregnant mother and a blind man were turned away from work. At
the gram sabha the block officials said that they would provide them with work.
3. The Secretary was not present at the gram sabha as he had been warned to stay away.
However, he did attend the block level meeting the next day.
562

Panchayat: Malti
Block: Mandar; District: Ranchi; State: Jharkhand

S. Name of Villag Nature of Comments Refere


No Work - OR e Discrepancy nce No.
. (Person)

1. Grade 1 Chatw v. 31 This gram sabha 15-A


Morem al workers on the 20 May [Joint
road were 2007 showed complai
nirman- shown as some of the nt fo 25
From working challenges that workers
Aslam’s for 54 exist in and
house to days. And institutionalizing written
Jamal’s 10 the social audit individu
house workers process. There al
were was a complaint complai
shown as made against nts of 7
563

working the social audit workers


for 30 team saying that ] See
days. they had offered also
However, money to people group
most to testify that report,
workers they had worked enclose
have for fewer days. d
given There were
written repeated
testimoni attempts to
es shout down the
(enclosed) social audit
and also team as well as
spoken on those testifying.
the day of Unfortunately
the gram people from the
sabha block office
that they seemed to be
were openly
employed supporting the
564

for beneficiary over


periods leading the
between attempt to
1 and a suppress the
half to 10 testimonies. The
days. complaint made
Only a by the
couple of beneficiary was
workers read out aloud
testified by a block
that they official, and
worked although there
for the full was no one
period wiling to come
and they out and testify in
were support of the
unable to complaint,
recall how seemed to
many indicate
days that complicity of the
565

was. block officials


vi. There was with some of the
an wring doings.
attempt Unless space is
to provided for
suppress people to speak
people openly such
and processes of
ensure social audit will
they did be undermined.
not
testify.
vii. Workers
complaine
d that
they were
forced to
sign on
blank
muster
566

rolls.
viii. Workers
only
received
wages
according
to the
number of
days they
actually
worked.

2. Basanti Malti vi. When the 15-B


Beck social [Deciding a work
Reinforced audit without prior
Concrete team consent of the
Cement arrived for gram sabha is a
Well inspection grave violation
of work at of the act and
the site, warrants
567

they were immediate


informed action against
that the the block
work was officials. This is
complete. happening on a
vii. This work large scale but
had not since this issue
been was discussed in
decided Malti it is
by the especially
gram important that
sabha but an inquiry must
was be initiated to
carried find out the
out under motives of the
direction officials in
from the charge for
block pushing this
office work.]
without
568

prior
consent of
the gram
sabha.
viii. False
entries in
muster
rolls and
job cards.
ix. Job cards
were with
the
Secretary
even after
the work
was
complete
d.
x. The
Secretary
569

decided
which
labourers
were to
be
employed
and for
how many
days.
570

iii. Fake job


Other cards for It is clear that 15- C
issues Rs. 50 people are not [Minute
were also familiar with the s of
sold by a process of Gram
Amina demanding sabha]
Khatun work. As soon as
iv. Workers they got an
wanted opportunity to
work, but demand work
there and fill forma\s
were no they line dup in
applicatio large numbers to
ns for do so. This is
work true of all the
available. panchayats
This where the social
became audit teams
clear went.
571

when all
the
applicatio
ns for
work that
the social
audit
team
carried
with
them, got
filled up
by people
on the
day of the
social
audit, and
there
were no
more
572

forms
available
either
with the
panchaya
t
secretary
or the
block
officials.
573

Panchayat: Chatra
Block: Angada; District: Ranchi; State: Jharkhand

S. Name of Villag Nature of Comments Refere


No Work - OR e Discrepancy nce No.
. (Person)

1. Talab Budi i. Forged 4-A


Nirman Beda entries in
muster
rolls

2.
574

Panchayat: Bongai Beda


Block: Angada; District: Ranchi; State: Jharkhand

S. Name of Villag Nature of Comments Refere


No Work - OR e Discrepancy nce No.
. (Person)

1. Ekka Banpu Muster rolls 6-A


Tigga r filled a month
Kup Fateh before the
Nirman Toli work actually
started.

2. Chanlal Bonga iv. Payment 6-B


Lohra i beda not made
Talab on time.
Nirman v. False entry
575

muster roll

iii. Fake
3. Miti Banpu entries in 6-C
morem r muster roll
road from iv. Underpaym
Sarandipa ent of
to Banpur labour
iii. Fake
4. Dansi Tanta entries in 6-D
Oraon Toli muster roll One of the
Kup and job laborers
Nirman card received
iv. Non payment in the
payment of gram sabha
wages. organized on 20
May 2007
576

Panchayat: Siladon
Block: Khunti; District: Ranchi; State: Jharkhand

S. Name of Villag Nature of Comments Referen


N Work - OR e Discrepancy ce No.
o. (Person)

1. Talab Varudi iii. No wages


Nirman ha have been
paid for
over a
month
iv. Work
started
even
though
many
workers
were
577

without job
cards

2. Latrju Work started in


ng February and
job cards were
made in April.

3. Kumku Job card was


ma with the
Panchayat
sewak for 10
months

4. Potom Job card was


Gada with the
Pradhan for 3
months
578

5. Fugu Chukr Pradhan is the


Singh u beneficiary of
Munda the scheme.
Talab The BDO said
Nirman that the talab
should be built
on the
Pradhan’s land.
Even though
this work was
number 5 on
the list of works
decided by the
gram sabha.

GENERAL COMMENTS:
579

1. In all 13 villages in this panchayat wages have not been paid for works for more than a
month since the work began.
2. Workers have stopped going to the worksite.
3. As a result all works have stopped.
4. In 3-6 villages the beneficiary is also the pradhan of the village
580

Annexure - VI
ACTIONAID, INDIA
SAMAJIK SAMIKHYA
The Social Audit of Jharnipalli Gram Panchayat
on October 30th, 2001
Introduction:
Jharnipalli is a gram panchayat consisting of nine villages, located amidst a green and
picturesque setting in the Agalpur block of Bolangir district in Orissa. Bolangir is one of the
undivided “KBK” (Kalahandi-Bolangir-Koraput) districts, infamous for their recurring drought
and starvation situation, for several decades now. In addition to starvation, high levels of
distress migration are witnessed year after year. The situation confounds most analysts, given
the fact that the macro-data from these districts indicates everything against a drought –
whether these are agriculture productivity/production figures, rainfall trends, forest cover in
the area. Travelling by train or road in various parts of Bolangir accentuates this sense of
bafflement, since one is confronted with greenery all around – lush forests or fields. As soon
as one enters the villages and looks out for the poor, one is again struck at the abject poverty
581

manifested in many ways: the physical condition of the poor, their housing, clothing, the
infrastructure available for them, the many forms of discrimination against them.

Jharnipalli is no different. All these apparent contradictions are visible here too. Local media
persons vouch that it is the most corrupt panchayat in the block. Several villagers claim that
they have been raising their voice against corruption in the village panchayat for many years
now, but the officials concerned have never acted on these complaints. Two sarpanches have
been dismissed/suspended in the past – incidentally, both were suspended on the grounds
that they had more than two children, and not on the complaints of corruption filed against
them !!! . However, the people of this GP were not aware of the reasons of suspension.

It was an important location to hold a social audit.

1. Background to the process:


Through the landmark 73rd Amendment to the Constitution in 1993, Panchayats were
incorporated into the Indian constitution as the third tier of the government in the country.
Also important is the fact that the Gram Sabha was given a central position, to exercise such
powers and perform such functions as the legislature of a state may, by law, provide. The
Gram Sabha, which is the assembly of all the adult residents of a village, is the ultimate
582

repository of power over development decision-making and local bureaucracy. In the


scheduled areas, the gram sabha also has powers over the management of natural resources
and over local adjudication of justice in accordance with the local traditions and customs. The
gram sabha, thus, is a political institution that seeks to place political power in the hands of
the people, without the mediation of elected representatives. It is believed that the active
functioning of gram sabhas can ensure a vibrant democracy, with elements of community
participation and control, as well as transparency and accountability.

The gram sabhas have been statutorily empowered in many states to take up development
planning as well as monitoring in the form of social audit. The power of social audit is seen as
a necessary corollary to the power of development planning and implementation. In addition
to the statutory back up provided by some states, there are Government of India instructions
which prescribe a mandatory and statutory social audit of all rural development works by the
gram sabha in each panchayat. The completion certificate for all village level public works
should be awarded by the gram sabha, after conducting a social audit, based on which the
next tranche of funds is released to the panchayat. These social audits are to be conducted in
special gram sabhas, which are convened specially for this purpose, and must be conducted
separately for each ward. Most people working on the issue of better participatory local
governance would like to see these available spaces better utilized.
583

On June 15th, 2001, a meeting was organised in the National Institute of Rural Development
[NIRD], Hyderabad, to discuss ways and means of strengthening gram sabhas in the country.
Senior government officials and eminent activists attended this. There were a number of
suggestions that this meeting came up with, to realise the potential of greater democratisation
at the village level, as envisaged in the 73rd amendment. The need for greater transparency
and accountability was emphasised yet again, in this meeting, through empowered gram
sabhas.

One important initiative that the meeting discussed, was to organise some “Learning By Doing
TOT workshops”, of institutionalising a system of social audit in a few pilot locations, wherein
the participants are expected to carry forward the same processes in their own respective
constituencies.

The task of doing this was assigned to NIRD, assisted by ActionAid India, with the help of
Mazdoor Kisan Shakti Sanghatan, which has gained invaluable experience of organising such
social audits (Jan Sunwais) over the years. After several other rounds of discussions on this
project, an action plan was drawn up collectively by MKSS, AAI, the Ministry of Rural
Development, NIRD and other individuals and agencies involved. It was decided that the first
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such social audit would take place in Jharnipalli gram panchayat of Agalpur block in the
drought-prone district of Bolangir in Orissa.

Why Jharnipalli ?
The announcement of holding the first pilot social audit at Jharnipalli only buttressed the effort
that was already on in the villages of Jharnipalli Gram Panchayat.

It was 10th April 2001. A residential Training of Trainers (TOT) on panchayatiraj was nearing its
completion in Bolangir, when Daniel of ActionAid came back from Rajasthan after attending
the Janawad Jun Sunwai. After he shared his experience among the participants, it was
participants like Jairam Bariha (who incidentally is also the President of the district level
people’s forum, Central Drought Action Committee (CDAC) who showed interest to conduct the
first pilot social audit in Jharnipalli.

2. The Process that led to the ‘D’ day:


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A couple of preliminary rounds of discussion by the CADMB representatives with the villagers
in Jharnipalli GP revealed that people would like to have this social audit conducted primarily
because they wanted to know the exact reasons for which two sarpanches were dismissed. To
their zeal came the unflinching support of the local CBO – Gayatri Club that was working with
the poor people in that panchayat for a number of years now. Behind their desire stood firmly
the CBO-NGO network of CADMB. And to top it all, there was a willing and supportive
administration at the district level. For all these factors, Jharnipalli fit well into the [ideal]
criteria that ActionAid and MORD were looking for. The people’s organisation in this GP was
found capable enough to organise this social audit.

As a first step in the process, a street play [geeti natya] was created by the villagers [of
Adendungri and Kudopalli] and the local organisation, informing them about their right to
information through social audit and the fact that such an audit is going to be taken up soon in
their gram panchayat. Songs were composed for this purpose and performances arranged in
all the nine villages of the gram panchayat. The environment building process which started in
the month of May continued in phases till 29th October – the day before the actual social audit
day on 30th October. Two rounds of awareness programme (street plays) were held in each of
the nine villages under Jharnipalli GP to convince the people on social audit. Apart from that
periodic visits by small teams from CADMB also helped in further sensitising and mobilising
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the villagers. At the district level, every month in its review meeting CADMB partners reviewed
the progress and preparedness in terms of people’s interest and information collection. About
a month before the social audit day, a district level coordination team consisting of two
members from each of the 18 partner organisation partner organisations was formed. This
team was given the responsibility to help the people’s organisation in collection and analysis
of information and management of logistics.

At the GP level, four-member Committees were set up in each of the villages for the purpose
of the social audit [two members from the women’s SHGs, and two from the Village Drought
Action Committee].

Exposure to Devdungri :

A three member team consisting of representatives from local people’s organisation, the local
CBO and ActionAid Bolangir field office, went for a one week exposure to the process of right
to information campaign spearheaded by the Mazdoor Kishan Sakti Sangha (MKSS) based at
Devdungri village in Rajasthan.

Involvement of district administration and Zilla Parishad :


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One of the vital components in a social audit is the cooperation of the local administration.
Fortunately, the district had a supportive collector, PD, DRDA and the president, Zilla Parishad.
The local administration and the president, Zilla Parishad were appraised about the plans. The
District Collector expressed his full support and cooperation to the effort. The local MLA, who
wanted similar processes to be taken up in as many gram panchayats as possible in the
constituency, reflected the same feelings. At a later date, the local police officials were also
informed about the plans for the social audit. The last four weeks preceding the social audit
saw the efforts on many fronts intensifying as a run up to the audit.

Information Collection

Soon after the decision taken on social audit, an introduction letter with request for information was
circulated to all offices and NGOs working in the GP by the CLC six months before the actual audit.
But there was reluctance to provide the information. With the help of the district collector’s
introduction letter and instructions, a team of people started collecting information related to
various works in the panchayat for the past three years [1998-99, 1999-2000, 2000-2001].
Information that was collected included various development works that had been taken up by
the block office in Agalpur, and works taken up directly by the Panchayat. Collection of
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various records and getting copies of the same began in earnest in August, it picked up from
the first week of October and continued till the very day of the audit-October 30th! Information
was collected regarding the following:

• JGSY
• EAS
• CRF
• IAY
• PMGY
• MLA/MPLAD
• ICDS
• PDS (only 2001)
• Rural Connectivity Programme
• Palli Sabha and Gram Sabha resolutions
• GP accounts
• FFW implemented by NGOs
• Watershed projects implemented by NGOs
• Veterinary services
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Information related to PDS, Kendu Leaf, Social Forestry and DPEP was not available because it
was refused. Within the records made available, there were gaps – measurement books were
not available for engineering works, and utilisation certificates were missing for all the works.
Two days before the social audit, a few of these, at the Gram Panchayat level, became
available.

Information sorting and filing

All the information and records collected had to be sorted out, and filed, as per the scheme,
and finally, village-wise. Each work had a separate file [case record] created, with all papers
related to the work put together, and the file cover containing a top sheet with all details.
Documents inside usually included sanction letters, resolutions and recommendations of the
panchayat, work orders to contractors, forms of undertaking by the contractor, muster rolls in
some cases, running account bills in some cases, bills and vouchers in some cases, estimates
of the works etc.

Information analysis and re-tabulation


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The next step in the process was to try and analyse the information available in various ways.
For instance, muster rolls which come as records of a week’s work, or a fortnight’s work, had
to be converted into worker-wise records so that verification with individual workers was
possible easily. Similarly, records were studied for violation of norms and guidelines….of
minimum and equal wages, of the execution of works by contractors (whereas it is banned by
the Ministry’s policy), of breaching of the estimates based on which the sanction was made in
the first instance and so on. Another example is trying to convert technical data into
information that could be easily triangulated with the villagers [cubic meters of measurement
of morram, converted into equivalent number of tractor trips, for instance].

Both the sorting and analysis stages were possible in a short period of time because of the
presence of a large number of volunteers and trainees (from CADMB, MKSS and ActionAid) for
this social audit – numbering around 40 literate persons on an average, on any given day !!!

Information sharing and field verification

The next stage was to share the collected/analysed information with the villagers. This stage
included holding initial large meetings to explain the purpose of the visits, followed by visiting
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various sites where the works are supposed to have taken place, and meeting with individual
beneficiaries. There were many instances when large meetings were used to verify muster
rolls of various works, and cross-check the bills and vouchers. This was a very sensitive
phase, and based on the situation, the visiting teams would either just share the information
and allow it to sink in or actually look for validation of the records with reality, in case the
villagers were forthcoming and cooperating.

To begin with, there was a pilot exercise held in village Adendungri led by the MKSS activist
Nikhil Dey. By this time, the volunteers from various organisations and the villages had been
grouped into teams, with team leaders. These teams were expected to stay in the villages,
and share, verify and obtain information. All these teams attended the pilot exercise in
Adendungri, so that they could learn from the process and take up the same in their
respective villages.

After this, starting from the 25th October, the teams went into their respective villages. A
‘roving team’ of three members was formed to oversee and coordinate the village level
exercise. The Village stays by the teams meant that some last minute surveys and data
collection could be taken up, in addition to triangulating the records with the villagers. Most
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importantly, the teams tried to focus on the poorest in each of these villages, and assess state
support available to them in any form, against what they are supposed to get. In that sense,
the purpose of the 4-day stay in the villages by the teams was three-fold:

• Assess the extent and instances of corruption, by sharing information with the villagers and
by physical verification of works
• Instill confidence in people to participate actively in the audit process, and to activate the
village level committees set up for the purpose
• Focus on the poorest in the villages, and assess the support reaching them or not reaching
them [social security, PDS, employment and livelihood security etc.]

Confidence-building
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Both the teams staying in the villages and a “roving team” which went from village to village
began an intense effort to instill confidence about the process in the gram sabha members.
Incidentally, the opportunity was used to dialogue with many panchayat ward members too.

There were usually some very pertinent questions asked by the villagers: “what if no action is
taken after the social audit – after we gather enough courage and confidence to point out
discrepancies in the social audit meeting and nothing happens afterwards, wouldn’t the
culprits of corruption become stronger than ever?”, they would question the teams. Similarly,
the villagers would want to know why there is no information or records from the Kendu Leaf
Department, when it is such an important source of livelihood for the poor in these villages.
When we were un-prepared with re-tabulated muster rolls in the case of earthworks taken up
by Gayatri Club in one instance, some of the villagers pointed out that we were being “partial”
in our work.

The last three days


#
Two days before the social audit, the District Collector visited the “camp” where he was
appraised about the preparations for the audit on the 30th. The Collector assured all the

The team of volunteers from outside, along with volunteers from the villages worked out of a Soil Conservation campus located in Podhpalli village, about one kilometer from the GP headquarters. This was the “camp”….
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village representatives who had gathered to hear from him, that action would definitely follow
the audit, and anyone found guilty will be punished. This helped in instilling a good deal of
confidence in all the skeptics.

The collector after sitting with the people for couple of hours went to the panchayat office
where he made available all relevant available panchayat records (to the social audit team) –
information that was so far unavailable and inaccessible. After himself going through the
panchayat records such as the cashbook, the collector found many irregularities on the basis
of which he issued a warning to the panchayat secretary and sealed the GP office. This news
spread to all the villages and gave further confidence to people who wanted to point out
irregularities.

The last three days were hectic….one more round of publicity in the villages was taken up. A
jeep equipped with a public address system went into all the villages and invited people to
take part in the audit process actively. On the 29th, Jharnipalli village had its regular weekly
market. This was used as an opportunity to stage a play, and distribute pamphlets about the
audit. Finally, together with the local people’s organisation’s representatives, the MKSS team
went into the three most “difficult” villages [these were Chungidadar and Jharnipalli, where the
Secretary of the Panchayat hails from, and has many relatives and, Kendumundi, where the
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present Sarpanch resides] and performed their muppet shows. They also encouraged people
for greater participation and involvement and discussed the need for the same.

Another team was meanwhile going around the district, and contacting other parts of Orissa,
to invite people to the audit. The invitees included the elected representatives of the district
and the panchayat, various officials in the district and the state, media representatives,
activists and NGOs. By this time, “trainees” from other states had also arrived, and they
joined various teams in their efforts.

During this period, an engineer-volunteer also went around to check the physical works that
have been claimed in the past three years, and gave his own assessment of the expenditure
incurred, and the deviations from plans. A Chartered Accountant went through the accounts
of the GP that were available with the team to check the entries as well as to re-arrange the
data in a more relevant fashion.

On the 29th, there was a preparatory meeting with all the teams, and the “presenters” from
the villages [each team had identified from amongst their villagers, those persons who can
present each work, followed by ones who will testify for or against it], and to finalise the
schedule for the actual social audit day on the 30th.
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A sequence of presentations was agreed upon, based on strategic reasons of ice-breaking as


well as exposing trends of corruption in this panchayat.

The day before the audit was also spent in preparing charts in the local language Oriya,
presenting the audit findings. The visual presentations consisted of separate charts on : Gram
Panchayat accounts, an overview of all the development works in the GP in the past three
years, separate village-wise charts, a chart on all the contractors who got work orders in the
past three years, a chart on all the roads claimed to have been laid, a chart on all the “ghost
works” discovered in the audit, a chart on the employment generated for the BPL families as
per the records, on the Indira Awas Yojana housing in three years, on the Food For Work
project taken up by a local NGO Palli Niketan with support from CARE-ORISSA, on the
watershed work taken up by Sabuja Biplav in two villages, on Gayatri Club’s work in all the
villages of the panchayat, on ActionAid India’s work in Bolangir district, and some photographs
displaying the status of works claimed in the records. Efforts were made to present
information in a simplified and intelligible manner.

All these processes, including the actual day of the audit, were captured both on video and
through photographs.
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Fortunately, the opportunity of taking up the social audit as per the desire of the local
organisations and under the aegis of the action-trainings of the MORD worked out well and a
social audit was conducted by the gram sabha members of Jharnipalli panchayat on October
30th, 2001, for developmental works undertaken in the past three years.

This audit took place with the active participation of many individuals and agencies : gram
sabha members, the gram panchayat members and officials, the block officials of Agalpur and
district administration of Bolangir, respectively, the CADMB members, CDAC, the village
drought action committees (VDAC), MKSS (Mazdoor Kisan Shakti Sanghatan) & NCPRI
(National Campaign for People’s Right to Information), NGOs working in other pats of the state
and ActionAid India.

The audit process meant intense efforts not just to collect, analyse, and verify data for any
corruption, but to get affected people to speak up and testify against the powerful in the
villages, engaging in this corruption. Trust and confidence had to be built with these poor
people, mostly dalits and women, to come out into the open, and state the facts as they are in
reality, and not as claimed in the records. A momentum had to be built up to this effect,
especially in the last one-month or so, of the process.
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3. The actual social audit day:

The social audit formally began at around 10.00 am on the 30th October 2001. Around 2500
people mostly belonging to the villages under Jharnipalli GP and other parts of Bolangir had
gathered to witness and participate in the first opportunity of making people on power
accountable to their actions. With initial tempo-building group songs by CLC (local people’s
organisation) and MKSS members, the stage was set for the unfolding of the audit process. As
per the plan, people were first allowed to read all the visual presentations put out. Many
people [other than the media] could be seen walking around taking down notes of the
information. Some of the villagers asked for clarifications on information pertaining to their
village, and the records were checked again.

The day began by a formal welcome to all the panelists and the participants by the Convenor
of CADMB, and the Vice President of Gayatri Club. The Country Director of AAI gave an
introduction to the social audit, and the powers vested with the gram sabha for the same.
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This was followed by the President of CDAC running everyone through the months of
preparation for the Jharnipalli social audit including the germination of the idea, and by laying
down the ground rules for the day.

From then onwards, a team of four “programme controllers” [nomenclature given by the
villagers on the earlier day!] took over the role of facilitating the proceedings. As the day
progressed, it became clearer that these anchors had an important role to play and that in this
case, the selection of the facilitators was very good. They were able to draw people out and
attempted to engage many people in the process.

The team leaders from all the villages coordinated with their village presenters and made
presentations about each work as per the records. This was followed by testimonies from
other villagers. The panelists spoke and raised questions now and then. There were questions
posed by the media section also.

It was decided the earlier day that village-wise presentations may be unwise – while one
village’s audit findings are presented, the others might not be interested, and it is also unfair
to the last village that gets discussed during the day, to wait for hours for their turn! Instead,
work-wise/issue-wise presentations were preferred.
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The sequence of presentations was like this:

1. Road works – Adendungri, Patharmunda, Amjharan, Podhpalli, Jharnipalli, Pandkital,


Kendumundi, Kudopalli – major works, with muster rolls also read out, followed by
testimonies
2. Smaller road works – a brief introduction of the work, and getting testimonies from groups
of villagers collectively, in a rapid manner
3. Gayatri Club – presentation by a CLC member, and cross examination by villagers
4. CARE Food For Work programme in four villages [Amjharan, Pandkital, Kudopalli and
Adendungri]
5. Construction works – Adendungri school building, Jharnipalli AWC building, Jharnipalli CC;
Indira Awas Yojana in Adendungri and Patharmunda
6. Anganwadi-related issues – Jharnipalli and Patharmunda villages
7. PDS – several case studies presented
8. Panchayat accounts for three years – presentation and clarifications
9. Demands put forward by the villagers, emerging from the social audit
10. Response to these by the ZP Chairperson and the District Collector
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11. Ms Aruna Roy’s address to the participants and her observations

Many other works that were supposed to be shared had to be dropped from the programme
because of the paucity of time.

The questioning, and the issues raised were very pertinent: insights into the ineffectual and
non-functioning of the panchayat, the gram sabha and the palli sabha were highlighted. Does
this panchayat have meetings at all, people were left wondering. The opaque fashion of
functioning was obvious.
The failure of the local bureaucracy to monitor and check the possibilities of corruption was
also brought out. There were many instances when they were in collusion [the junior engineer
had certified many ghost works through his measurement books, for example, with the BDO
certifying them too].

The Secretary of the GP was called to the mike in some cases to elaborate on a particular

issue. For instance, it was discovered that all the ghost works had something in common –
they had all claimed to have used the same tractor [and its driver] for transporting materials
into various villages….the same vehicle number, the same village, the same driver who signed

All those works which are claimed on record, but which are not executed at all!
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on receipts. One of the gram sabha members demanded that it be revealed who this person
was – and went ahead to inform everyone that this is the Secretary’s own tractor !
Subsequently, it was also revealed that the tractor did not exist with the Secretary for all the
three years, though it appears consistently on the records! There were many muster rolls
read out where false names were recorded of people who have migrated out of the village
years back ! Of people who feel insulted to find their names‘ on lowly works like road-laying’,
and have never taken part in the work ! Of elderly people who are incapable of working
anymore ! There were muster rolls where the amounts recorded were higher than the
amounts actually paid to the labourers!

There were also instances when the panelists and facilitators drew a blank response from the
villagers – this happened especially in the case of Jharnipalli works. The presence of some
powerful people from the village silenced many others. There were some stalemates too – an
entire village got split vertically into two groups, which presented contradictory testimonies
with regard to a road work [Jharnipalli]. There were instances when the local organisation
Gayatri Club was targeted by the villagers, both by the ones who genuinely wanted to raise
issues related to its functioning, and also by people who saw it as the weakest link in the
entire process. On the positive side, it meant that the villagers get into the habit of
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questioning critically all development works in their village – whether taken up by government
agencies or non-governmental agencies.

The Silver Lining :

It was heartening to see many dalits in the villages coming forward to speak, and better yet,
women willing to testify. In one instance, when an entire village kept quiet out of fear [of the
Secretary and a couple of powerful contractors in the village], it was two dalit women from the
village, who came out with the truth very boldly. Here, it has to be pointed out that women
were not actively drawn out to participate during the first quarter of the audit – the reason was
simple – they were invisible, and seated far from the “dias”. Until somebody pointed out that
the facilitators need to address the women too, they were ignored ! Once they were
encouraged to start speaking, they were bolder than the men in pointing out various
problems.

The culture of silence definitely got broken on that dramatic day!


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Towards the end, both the Zilla Parishad Chairperson and the District Collector promised the
gram sabha members that action would be taken against everyone found guilty of corruption
and criminal offences in the panchayat.

4. Findings of the audit:

The following is a list findings :

• Ghost works – 36 ghost works were discovered from amongst the records available for the
social audit, worth a sanction of Rs 111,000/- mostly for road works and ‘cross bund’.
These works did not happen at all, but money sanctioned and claimed on the records.

• Contractors – In spite of the GOI ban on the use of contractors for execution of works, there
were 31 contractors discovered in the social audit, including contractors for Indira Awas
Yojana, who claimed expenditure worth 15 lakhs of rupees. These contractors are
engaged as “Community Leaders” in the records!

• Fake Muster rolls – In many cases where the work order has been given to a contractor,
muster rolls were not available with the case records. Where they were available and
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verified, it was found that there were many ways of tampering with muster rolls…wage
rates were recorded higher than the rates actually paid; false names were
registered; false signatures and thumb impressions were made up in the records;
more days of work were claimed than the actual employment generated….

• Underpaid workers - The labourers worked in different activities were paid less than
the amount mentioned in the muster rolls, which is even less than their minimum
wages.

• False bill – False bills on purchase of materials and transports were found from most of the
records. A bill was found in the name of a particular tractor driver with a tractor number who
has taken around one lakh rupees apparently for dumping road materials. It was later
known that the tractor did not exist in the GP. The Secretary, however, tried to clarify it that
the tractor was there and has since been sold.

• Purchase over billing – For instance pay for and use 50 bags of cement and get a bill of
100 bags from the supplier and claim the same. Such a bill was found in Adendunguri where
the bill contains 300 bags of cement used in the school building but people have kept the
records of 225 bags actually used; an apparent corruption of Rs11000.
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• Employment – Though the government has a policy of creating atleast 100 days of
employment through its employment generation programmes (EAS) for all BPL families in
the drought areas, the analysis of records available [of all the works for which muster rolls
were available] showed 12 ½ days of employment on an average for each BPL family
in the panchayat for a period of three years.

• PDS issues – Though the overall picture on PDS in the panchayat could not be arrived at,
due to paucity of information as well as time, the social audit presented three distinct
dimensions in relation to this service: [I] many deserving families do not have BPL cards and
cannot avail of this facility; [ii] those who do have BPL cards often do not have the
purchasing capacity to buy materials due to them on their card and this stock either goes
back to the godowns or is diverted into the black market [unfortunately, one could not get a
picture of what happens at the GP level, since the data related to allotments, incoming
stocks and distribution was not available for comparison]; [iii] corruption detected in
cases where there were wrong recordings on the PDS cards/distribution books,
whereas the quantities actually sold were different. Villagers, especially BPL card-
holders pointed out (during the village analysis process) that the secretary had about 150
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BPL cards mortgaged to him. This, however, could not be proved as no BPL card was found
either from the panchayat office or the house of the secretary.

• Anganwadi – In the case of Anganwadi programme too, overall picture was not available
with regard to the stocks coming in, to be compared with the distribution records or actual
receipts by people. One important issue did emerge though: while the stock comes
measured in weights, it is distributed in volumes [special measures in the local area called
adas], which are lesser in quantity [one kilo is converted into a volume of just 800-
900 gms during distribution]. The actual extent of corruption could not be established
though. The other issue with regard to anganwadis is the arbitrary selection of
‘beneficiaries’ by the AWC worker, to fulfill the target number of people. It was found that
the poorest got excluded due to the worker’s favour for the well off.

• Incomplete Indira Awas Yojana – The Indira Awas in every village were found either
incomplete or not paid the total amount to the beneficiary even after the
completion.

• NGOs and their works - In a state like Orissa, where NGOs are a common entity in the
lives of poor people, this social audit covered the works of three organisations in detail: Palli
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Niketan, Sabuja Biplav and Gayatri Club. Unfortunately, records were obtained not from the
NGOs, but from the people’s committees in the villages in two cases. Some discrepancies
were also discovered. This is a good beginning in making the NGOs accountable to the
people, for their development works.

5. The demands that were put forward:

A set of demands were put forward by the gram sabha members of Jharnipalli panchayat, after
the social audit. These were:

• the District Collector to set up an enquiry committee, which should give its report in the
shortest period possible
• Recoveries to be made from the guilty, and criminal proceedings initiated against them
• From now on, all records should be kept open for the people
• Records of all departments, including the forestry departments should be made available to
the people
• Information boards should be put up outside the concerned offices
• A similar audit to be taken up each year
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• A permanent solution to be evolved for tackling hunger and starvation issues in the village
• Social Audit process should be applicable to all GPs in the district including the NGOs
working in the area

6. The strengths in this case:

• An empowered people’s organisation: The Cluster Level Committee (CLC) of the people,
facilitated by Gayatri Club in the GP was empowered enough to take up this audit. The
members have put lots of effort in making it successful.

• The District Administration: Where it has taken years for information to be collected for a
social audit in other places, thanks to a supportive district administration in Bolangir,
information collection was easier. Various district and block level officials cooperated with
us, and provided us with records. The Collector also stepped in at a crucial stage just before
the audit, to instill confidence in the people about the audit process.
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• MKSS experience: Years of invaluable experience gained by MKSS in their struggle for the
right to information proved to be very helpful in this social audit. MKSS volunteers spent
nearly two weeks prior to the audit, providing quality time and guidance for the audit, in the
field.

• The support of a large network: The presence of 19 NGOs/CBOs in the form of CADMB and
their people’s organizations from all over the district of Bolangir lent a great deal of support
to the villagers of Jharnipalli.

• ActionAid’s field presence : Field presence of ActionAid in Bolangir also contributed in adding
strength to the people who took up this challenge.

• The ongoing fight against corruption: One could come across the presence of a large number
of ‘volunteers’ from the villages of Jharnipalli, who were raising issues of corruption in the GP
for several years now. They took part in this process very actively, and found it a good
opportunity to raise issues that concerned them.

• The location of the village: By virtue of being located in one of the “KBK” districts of Orissa,
this panchayat and its social audit also provided an opportunity to link up the process to
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larger advocacy agendas centred around food and livelihood security. The fact that there is
inadequate resource allocation for development works in the area, and that even the
meager sums that come in end up in the hands of contractors, was apparent to see after the
social audit. Failure of the government on many fronts like employment generation, social
security, food security came to the fore.

• The panchayat’s decision to formally notify the gram sabha for a social audit strengthened
the process.

• A large team of volunteers working in a camp mode within the GP limits, and being
accessible at all points of time to the villagers was also an advantage. So was the presence
of the volunteers’ teams in the villages during the last five days of the process. The villagers
were free to come and check the records anytime during this period, and would also drop by
to inform us about the latest dynamics unfolding the village…
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• Women participation : Large number of women from all villages have participated in this
audit actively despite of the pressure from many sides. The women from Jharnipalli could
able to prove the corruption on the audit day which no male person dare to speak the truth.

7. Total estimated corruption :

Including the ghost work of Rs. 1,11,000/, Rs. 1,00,000/ of reportedly false tractor use and Rs.
11,000/ of extra cement use, the village analysis of all the records have estimated in monetary
terms misappropriation of about Rs. 11,00,000/ (not confirmed) out of a total investment of
27.75 lakhs in the panchayat in last three years.

7. The problems along the way

A mysterious incident which caused misunderstandings and anxiety:

Just one day after the “camp” started in Podhpalli on the 16th of October, Mr Jayaram Bariha
accused the panchayat secretary and peon of attempting to poison him, whereas the
secretary retorted back by saying that Jayaram was drunk at that time and was making false
allegations. The truth of the matter is not known to anyone since conflicting reports were
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received by the others in the camp, but this incident definitely turned out to be an unwanted
one – there were demands in the villages that the secretary’s name be cleared from this
accusation first. The entire team of volunteers and others [including the district
administration] were anxious about the whereabouts and safety of Jayaram on the night of the
incident and this slowed down the process for a few days.

Constant threats to the local people’s organisation :

The episode involving Jairam and the panchayat secretary was as much speculative as it was
mysterious. Constant threats were pouring in from the secretary and his relatives to the
members of the local people’s organisation (CLC) throughout the social audit process. When
things were becoming clear that there was discrepancy in the works implemented, threats to
life were also issued from time to time. On insistence of the people to make panchayat records
available, the secretary once reportedly issued a statement saying “ since many of the works
have actually not been implemented how can I give records; let there be a murder, but I will
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not provide the records. Secretary’s dithering on making records available until the collector
issued him instructions speaks a lot in this connection. On the morning of the ‘fateful’ day
when Jairam was to accompany the secretary for photocopying of the panchayat records, the
brother-in-law of the secretary was reported to have said to Bariha ‘I shall remove your entire
denture if you keep on insisting on the records and do anything silly against my brother-in-
law’.

The block office records burnt down:

In the course of a dharna organised by a political party a couple of weeks before the social
audit, the block office was set on fire by a violent mob and several records, relating mainly to
education and agriculture, burnt down. As a consequence, many records could not be
obtained by the social audit team – whether the information was available or not, this became
the stated justification for the block authorities to deny additional information.

The secretary goes missing:

About a week before the audit, the secretary of the panchayat went missing! Nobody knew his
whereabouts, nor were forthcoming with any information if they knew about it. His presence
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and cooperation were crucial for the team to obtain some more information at the GP level.
The records were inside the GP Office and the secretary had the key of the locked office with
him, and was untraceable! Precious time was lost due to this and the remaining information
reached too late because of this. It was only the visit of the Collector to the Camp on the 27 th,
which made him re-surface.

The ‘warnings’ issued:

There were reports from two villages that warnings were issued to the villagers against
testifying on the day of the audit, and in one village, a penalty of rupees hundred on anyone
speaking in the meeting was announced. The real truth is not known, but some village(rs)
were visibly silent than others in their participation.

The organisers and the demand for transparency on their behalf:


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For many of the people opposing the social audit [the panchayat officials, the local contractors
and others] Gayatri Club [the CBO which works in the panchayat], was a strategic point to hit.
There were many questions raised about GC’s own style of functioning, about its functionaries,
about its funding, and about its failed promises and so on. Villagers went into the history of
the organisation and pointed out several discrepancies from the past and questioned the
legitimacy of the organisation in holding a social audit.

All of this reinforces the belief that such social audits are best taken up by organisations
willing to be transparent and participatory in their functioning, and willing to face up to the
legitimate questioning by the community. Gayatri Club was bold enough to face it.

Date fixed before laying hand on all records :

One major disadvantage in this social audit was the fact that the date for the audit was fixed
before records from all the agencies and on all the implemented works were available. This
put tremendous pressure on the pace of work and also meant that the audit day dawned on
time even though all required information was not available. Strategically, it would have
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made sense to complete information collection and analysis first and based on this
groundwork, to fix the date at a convenient time.

The timing of the audit was also important. It happened during a festival period and this
posed problems both with the volunteers and the community members as a number of
government officials and institutions went on holidaying too.

Knowing what one is collecting [information]:

One other gap in the Jharnipalli audit was that the set of people collecting the information and
getting copies of the same, did not always know what they were collecting and why? This
meant that they could not identify during the information collection phase what else was
missing. It was only around the 17th of October that with the help of MKSS activists that the
data collected was sorted and gaps identified. As a capacity building process, this has
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definitely equipped many people now in trying to understand the records and decipher the
information in a commonly understood form.
Information on certain crucial issues and departments not available:

This audit being in Bolangir, issues like PDS, Kendu Leaf etc., become very important, but
unfortunately, information about these was either incomplete, or completely unavailable.

8. The follow - up :

 Situation became slightly tense after the audit. Threats were issued again to the local
organisation and to the local people’s organisation. The members of CADMB including field
office staff of ActionAid kept visiting the villages after the social audit to assess the
social/political tension around.
 The district collector instructed a special audit of the Jharnipalli panchayat by the district
panchayat auditor.
 The secretary of the panchayat has been issued suspension notice with a recovery from him
of Rs. 68,000.
 FIR and criminal proceedings against the secretary are being processed by the district
administration.
619

 Exposures of people’s organisations and NGO representatives from different parts of the
state took place.

The Epilogue :

As it is, the Jharnipalli case was a social audit ‘on test’, a pilot. Thus the main aim was learning
from the experience. With the questions that this pilot has thrown up, the meeting showed
how powerful a tool this social audit can be. The process is fairly simple, but political will a
major precondition: essentially it is about opening the records of projects to the intended
beneficiaries, unearthing corruption. As some MKSS people commented, as Orissa is a state
that does have resources, this is even more necessary than in Rajasthan.

Right to information and the instruments to realise this, is an essential element of well-
functioning local democracy. But the pilot also indicated the challenges that come with this,
regarding local capacity to carry this labour-intensive process and possibilities of backlash.
The relative lack of participation in the meeting of people from the poor and marginalised
sections was only to be speculated; in any case, lack of political awareness and
marginalisation of specific groups are issues that need to be addressed to make such
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processes successful – where it is most needed, most commitment and investments may be
needed.
621

ANNEXURE VII

THE NATIONAL RURAL EMPLOYMENT GUARANTEE ACT 2005: THE BASIC


FEATURES
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This annexure discusses the basic features of the National Rural Employment Guarantee Act 2005,
hereafter NREGA 2005 or “Employment Guarantee Act” for short. The relevant sections of the Act are
mentioned in square brackets.

A. GENERAL QUESTIONS

1 What is the basic idea of an Employment Guarantee Act?

The idea is to give a legal guarantee of employment to anyone who is willing to do casual manual labour at
the statutory minimum wage. Any adult who applies for work under the Act is entitled to being employed on
public works without delay. Thus, an Employment Guarantee Act provides a universal and enforceable
legal right to the most basic form of employment. It is a step towards legal enforcement of the right to work,
as an aspect of the fundamental right to live with dignity.

2 What are the potential benefits of an Employment Guarantee Act?

There are many. To start with, an effective Employment Guarantee Act (EGA) would help to protect rural
households from poverty and hunger. In fact, a “full-fledged” EGA (with an unlimited individual guarantee of
work, not restricted to “100 days per households per year”) would enable most poor households in rural
623

India to cross the poverty line. Secondly, it would lead to a dramatic reduction of rural-urban migration: if
work is available in the village, many families will stay in place instead of heading for the cities. Thirdly,
guaranteed employment can be a major source of empowerment for women. Based on past experience,
women are likely to account for a large proportion of labourers employed under the Act, and guaranteed
employment will give them some economic independence. Fourthly, the Employment Guarantee Act is an
opportunity to create useful assets in rural areas. Fifthly, guaranteed employment is likely to change power
equations in the rural society, and to foster a more equitable social order.

Last but not least, the Employment Guarantee Act is a means of strengthening the bargaining power of
unorganized workers. This, in turn, could help them to struggle for other important entitlements, such as
minimum wages and social security. The process of mobilising for effective implementation of the Act also
has much value in itself. It is a unique opportunity for “unorganised workers” to organise, which could give a
new lease a life to the labour movement in large parts of India.

3 Who is entitled to work under the Employment Guarantee Act?


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The work guarantee is a “universal” entitlement - any adult is entitled to apply. The Act is based on the
principle of self-selection: anyone who is willing to do unskilled manual labour at the minimum wage is
presumed to be in need of public support, and must be provided employment on demand. If anyone tells
you that the work guarantee is only for households with a “BPL card”, do not believe it!

4 Is there a limit on the number of days of guaranteed employment over the year?

Yes. As mentioned earlier, the employment guarantee is restricted to "100 days per household per year".
Note that “year” here refers to the financial year, which starts on 1 April. In other words, on 1 April each
household gets a new “quota” of 100 days for the next twelve months. Note that the quota of 100 days can
be “shared” between adult members of the household: different persons can work on different days, or even
on the same day, as long as their combined days of employment do not exceed 100 days in the financial
year.

B. THE EMPLOYMENT GUARANTEE SCHEME


The Employment Guarantee Act directs every State Government to prepare an Employment Guarantee
Scheme within six months, in order to implement the work guarantee.
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5 What kinds of work can be taken up under the Employment Guarantee Scheme?

Schedule I of the Act lists eight categories of works that are supposed to be “the focus of the Scheme”.
Briefly, these include (1) “water conservation and water harvesting”; (2) “drought proofing” (including
afforestation); (3) “irrigation canals including micro and minor irrigation works”; (4) “provision of irrigation
facility” to land owned by households belonging to the Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes,
beneficiaries of land reforms, or beneficiaries of Indira Awas Yojana; (5) “renovation of traditional water
bodies” including desilting of tanks; (6) “land development”; (7) “flood control and protection works” including
drainage in water logged areas; and (8) “rural connectivity to provide all-weather access”. In addition, there
is a residual ninth category: “any other work which may be notified by the Central Government in
consultation with the State Government”.

This list is quite restrictive, and in this respect NREGA 2005 contrasts sharply with the “citizens’ draft”,
where permissible works were broadly defined as works that contribute (directly or indirectly) to “the
increase of production, the creation of durable assets, the preservation of the environment, or the
improvement of the quality of life”. Short of modifying Schedule I, the only way of expanding the list of
permissible works within the framework of the Act is to add further works under the residual category.
626

The Act also states that a list of “preferred works”, to be taken up on a priority basis, is to be drawn by the
State Employment Guarantee Council. The preferred works are to be identified “based on their ability to
create durable assets”, and may differ between different areas.

6 Can works under EGS be taken up in urban areas?

In principle, no. The Act states that “the works taken up under the Scheme shall be in rural areas”
[Schedule I, Para 3].

7 Are there any other important restrictions on EGS works?

“New works” can be initiated only if (1) at least fifty labourers become available for such work, and (2) the
labourers cannot be absorbed in the ongoing works. However, this restriction can be waived by the State
Government “in hilly areas and in respect of afforestation”. [Schedule II, Para 13]

8 Who will be responsible for implementing the Employment Guarantee Scheme?

The Employment Guarantee Scheme will be implemented by the State Government, with funding from the
Central Government. According to Section 13, the “principal authorities” for planning and implementation of
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the Scheme are the Panchayats at the District, Intermediate and village levels. However, the division of
responsibilities between different authorities is actually quite complex, as we shall see further on.

The basic unit of implementation is the Block. In each Block, a “Programme Officer” will be in charge. The
Programme Officer is supposed to be an officer of rank no less than the Block Development Officer (BDO),
paid by the Central Government, and with the implementation of EGS as his or her sole responsibility. The
Programme Officer is accountable to the “Intermediate Panchayat” as well as to the District Coordinator.
We shall return to this in Section E, after discussing the entitlements of the labourers under EGS.

C. WORKERS' ENTITLEMENTS

9 How are labourers expected to apply for work under the Employment Guarantee Scheme?

It is basically a “two-step” procedure. The first step is to “register” with the Gram Panchayat. The second
step is to apply for work. Registration is required only once every five years, but applications for work have
to be submitted each time work is required.

The main purpose of the registration process is to facilitate advance planning of works. If a household
applies for registration, it is the duty of the Gram Panchayat to register it and issue a "job card". The job
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card will ensure that labourers are in possession of a written record of the number of days they have
worked, wages paid, unemployment allowances received, and so on, instead of depending on government
officials for this purpose. A job card is supposed to be valid for five years at least.

Applications for work may be submitted at any time, either through the Gram Panchayat or directly to the
Programme Officer. Both have a duty to accept valid applications and to issue a dated receipt to the
applicant [Schedule II, Para 10]. Applications must be for at least 14 days of continuous work [Schedule II,
Para 7]. The Act provides for group applications, advance applications, and multiple applications over time
[Schedule II, Paras 10, 18 and 19]. Applicants are supposed to be told where and when to report for work
within 15 days, by means of a letter as well as of a public notice displayed on the notice board of the Gram
Panchayat and at the office of the Programme Officer [Schedule II, Paras 11 and 22].

Note that the unit of registration is the “household”, while applications for work are individual applications.

10 How is a “household” defined in the Act?


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The Act defines a household as “the members of a family related to each other by blood, marriage or
adoption and normally residing together and sharing meals or holding a common ration card” [Section 2(f)].
The problem with this definition is that members of a “joint family” who live together and share a ration card
may be treated as a single household, even if the household is quite large. This will be unfair to large
households, because they will be entitled to the same 100 days of work per year as small households, even
if their needs are much larger. Ideally, every nuclear family should be considered as a separate household.

11 How much are labourers going to be paid under the Employment Guarantee Scheme?

Labourers are entitled to the statutory minimum wage applicable to agricultural workers in the State, unless
the Central Government “overrides” this by notifying a different wage rate. If the Central Government
notifies a wage rate, it is subject to a minimum of Rs 60 per day. [Section 6]

12 What will be the mode of payment – daily wages or piece rates?

Both are permitted under the Act. In both cases, the minimum wage defined in Section 6 applies. If wages
are paid on a piece-rate basis, the schedule of rates has to be such that a person working for seven hours
would normally earn the minimum wage. [Schedule I, Paras 6 to 8]
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13 Will wages be paid in cash or in kind?

Wages may be paid in cash or in kind or both. Payment in kind would usually mean part payment in
foodgrain. The cash component has to account for at least 25 per cent of the total wage. [Schedule II, Para
31]

14 What about the regularity of wage payments?

Wages are to be paid every week, or in any case “not later than a fortnight after the date on which such
work was done” [Section 3(3)]. Further the State Government “may prescribe” that a proportion of the
wages in cash should be paid on a daily basis [Schedule II, Para 32].

15 What if wages are not paid on time?

In such cases, labourers are entitled to compensation as per the provisions of the Payment of Wages Act
1936 [Schedule II, Para 30].

16 Can different wages be paid to men and women?


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Certainly not. Men and women are entitled to the same wages. In fact, any form of gender discrimination is
prohibited. [Schedule II, Para 34]

17 Are labourers entitled to any specific facilities at the worksite?

Yes. The following facilities are supposed to be available at the worksite: “safe drinking water, shade for
children and periods of rest, first-aid box with adequate material for emergency treatment for minor injuries
and other health hazards connected with the work” [Schedule II, Para 27]. This is not very much, but even
these basic facilities are often missing at the worksites – it is important to insist that they should be in place.

18 What about facilities for the care of young children?

The Act states that “in case the number of children below the age of six years accompanying the women
working at any site are five or more, provisions shall be made to depute one of such women workers to look
after such children” [Schedule II, Para 28]. Further, the person who is deputed to look after young children
is entitled to the same minimum wage as other labourers [Schedule II, Para 28].

19 Where will the work be provided?


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“As far as possible”, work must be provided within 5 km of the applicant’s residence. If it is provided beyond
that radius, work must be provided within the Block, and workers must be paid daily transport and living
allowances equivalent to 10 per cent of the wage rate. [Schedule II, Paras 12 and 14]

20 Is there any provision in the Act for the employment of persons with disabilities?

No. The “citizens’ draft” included a special clause on this, but it was removed in the final version of the Act.
However, it may be possible to reinstate special provisions for disabled persons under the “Rules” of the
Employment Guarantee Scheme, to be framed by the State Government. Such provisions might include,
for instance: (1) recording of any disabilities at the time of registration; (2) provision of special work
opportunities to persons with disabilities; (3) mandatory provision of special employment facilities to
households where no-one is able to take up ordinary employment opportunities due to disability or related
reasons (e.g. need to take care of a disabled person); and (4) ear-marking of 3% of the EGS funds for
employing persons with disabilities. Note that the last suggestion is based on the Persons with Disabilities
Act 1995, which states that “the appropriate Governments and local authorities shall reserve not less than
three per cent in all poverty alleviation schemes for the benefit of persons with disabilities.”
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21 What happens if there is an accident at an EGS worksite?

If a labourer is injured “by accident arising out of and in the course of his employment” under the
Employment Guarantee Scheme, he or she is entitled to “such medical treatment as is admissible under the
Scheme”, free of charge. If hospitalisation is required, he or she is entitled to accommodation, treatment,
medicines and a daily allowance “not less than half the wage rate”. There are similar provisions for children
who may be accompanying labourers employed under the Scheme. In case of death or permanent
disability, an ex gratia payment of Rs 25,000 (“or such amount as may be specified by the Central
Government”) is to be paid to the victim or his or her family. [Schedule II, Paras 24, 25, 26 and 33]

22 Can labourers exercise any choice regarding the type of work that is given to them?

No. They have to accept whatever employment is given to them by the Gram Panchayat or Programme
Officer [Schedule I, Para 10]. At best, they have some indirect say in the matter in so far as they participate
in the process of planning the works, through Gram Sabhas and other means (see Section E below).

23 What happens if someone applies for work but does not report for work when employment is provided?
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If an applicant fails to report for work within 15 days of being informed that work is available, he or she
stands debarred from receiving the unemployment allowance for a period of three months.

C. UNEMPLOYMENT ALLOWANCE

24 Who is entitled to an unemployment allowance under the Employment Guarantee Act?

Anyone who has not been provided with work within 15 days of applying (or within 15 days of the date for
which employment is sought, in the case of "advance applications"). [Section 7(1)]

25 In such circumstances, is the State Government obliged to pay the unemployment allowance?

This is certainly the intention. In the “citizens’ draft”, the payment of the unemployment allowance was
mandatory. However, NREGA 2005 is a little ambiguous on this. Section 7(1) suggests that labourers who
have not been provided with work have an unconditional right to the unemployment allowance. However,
Section 7(2) suggests that the payment of the allowance is “subject to such terms and conditions of
eligibility as may be prescribed by the State Government and subject to the provisions of this Act and the
Schemes and the economic capacity of the State Government”. It is important to insist on the payment of
the unemployment allowance in all cases where labourers have not been provided with work.
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26 What is the role of the unemployment allowance?

The unemployment allowance has several roles. First, it provides a limited form of unemployment
assistance to those who are waiting for work. Second, it provides a clear “signal” that the responsible
authorities are failing to provide employment to all applicants. Third, it acts as a “penalty” on the State
Government for this failure, since the payment of unemployment allowances is the responsibility of the State
Government.

This penalty creates a strong incentive for the State Government to provide work. This is because
employment costs are borne overwhelmingly by the Central Government, while the unemployment
allowance is paid by the State Government. Therefore, State Governments can “save money” by providing
employment instead of paying the allowance. However, for this incentive to work, the unemployment
allowance must be actually paid, and not remain “on paper” as has happened in Maharashtra (where the
unemployment allowance has never been paid). This is why the actual payment of the unemployment
allowance is so important.

27 What is the level of the unemployment allowance?


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The unemployment allowance is to be fixed by the State Government. However, it must be “no less than
one-fourth of the wage rate” for the first thirty days, and “not less than one-half of the wage rate” after that.
[Section 7(2)]

28 What is the time frame for the payment of the unemployment allowance?

The unemployment allowance is to be paid “not later than fifteen days from the date on which it became due
for payment” [Section 7(5)].

29 When does someone who is receiving the unemployment allowance cease to be eligible for it?

The payment of the unemployment allowance can be discontinued in the following circumstances: (1) the
recipient has been directed to report for work by the Gram Panchayat or the Programme Officer; (2) the
period for which employment is sought has come to an end; (3) the recipient’s household has exhausted its
“quota” of 100 days of work (within the financial year); (4) the household has earned as much as the wages
of one hundred days of work, from the unemployment allowance and wage employment combined, within
the financial year. [Section 7(3)]
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E. IMPLEMENTATION AND MONITORING AUTHORITIES

Note: The National Rural Employment Guarantee Act 2005 is a complex plot with many actors. The main
actors are: the State Council, the District Coordinator, the Programme Officer, the Intermediate Panchayat,
the Gram Panchayat and the Gram Sabha, aside from “implementing agencies” other than the Panchayats.
There is an elaborate division of responsibilities between these different authorities, and the details are not
always clear from the Act. An attempt is made below to present a simplified account of the facts.

30 What are the responsibilities of the "Programme Officer" in the Employment Guarantee Scheme?

The Programme Officer essentially acts as a “coordinator” for the Employment Guarantee Scheme at the
Block level. Remember, the Block is the basic unit of implementation. Within the Block, two separate
processes take place simultaneously. On one side, people are applying for work through the Gram
Panchayat, or directly to the Programme Officer – in both cases the applications eventually reach his or her
office. On the other side, proposals for works to be taken up under EGS (“projects” for short) are being
prepared by the “implementing agencies”: the Intermediate Panchayat, the Gram Panchayats, line
departments, NGOs, and so on. The Programme Officer stands at the intersection of these two processes:
he or she receives the applications for work as well as the project proposals, and is supposed to “match” the
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two. This involves sanctioning projects in such a way that all those who have applied for work can be
employed within 15 days.

Aside from this “planning” role, the Programme Officer has a “monitoring” role. He or she is supposed to
monitor the implementation of the works sanctioned, ensure that wages are paid on time, deal with any
complaints that may arise, enforce all the transparency provisions, and so on. The list of responsibilities is
quite long and hard to summarise – the main duties of the Programme Officer are listed in Box 1.

Ultimately, the chief responsibility of the Programme Officer is to ensure that anyone who applies for work
gets employment within 15 days, or in other words, to safeguard the basic entitlement of labourers under
the Act. When this is not possible, he or she has to sanction and disburse the unemployment allowance,
and explain in his or her annual report why employment could not be provided. The Programme Officer is
accountable to the Intermediate Panchayat and the District Coordinator.

31 Can you clarify what is meant by “implementing agencies”?

Implementing agencies include any agency that is “authorized by the Central Government or the State
Government to undertake the implementation of any work” taken up under EGS [Section 2(g)]. The main
implementing agencies are the Gram Panchayats: at least 50 per cent of the works (in terms of share of the
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EGS funds) have to be implemented through the Gram Panchayats [Section 16(5)]. Other implementing
agencies include the Intermediate Panchayats, the District Panchayats, and “line departments” such as the
Public Works Department, the Forest Department, the Irrigation Department, and so on. The Employment
Guarantee Act also allows NGOs to act as implementing agencies.

32 Can private contractors act as implementing agencies?

No. The Act clearly states: “The [Employment Guarantee] Scheme shall not permit engaging any
contractor for implementation of the projects under it” [Schedule I, Para 11]. In short, contractors
are banned.
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MAIN RESPONSIBILITIES OF VARIOUS ACTORS AT THE BLOCK LEVEL

A. RESPONSIBILITIES OF THE BLOCK OFFICER

1. Ensure that every applicant is provided unskilled


manual work in accordance with the provisions of the
Scheme within fifteen days.
2. Prepare a plan for the Block by consolidating the project
proposals prepared by the Gram Panchayats and other
implementing agencies.
3. Match the demand for employment with the employment
opportunities available in the Block.
4. Receive applications for work and issue a dated receipt
to the applicant. (This responsibility is shared with the Gram
Panchayat.)
5. Notify applicants to report for work. (This responsibility is
also shared with the Gram Panchayat.)
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6. Ensure prompt and fair payment of wages to all


labourers employed under EGS.
7. Sanction and disburse the unemployment allowance.
8. Sanction projects to be taken up by the Gram
Panchayats.
9. Monitor the projects taken up by the Gram
Panchayats and other implementing agencies within the
Block.
10.Keep a copy of the muster rolls available for inspection
“by any person interested”.
11.Ensure that regular social audits of all works are carried
out by the Gram Sabha.
12.Deal promptly (within seven days) with any
complaint that may arise in connection with the
implementation of the Scheme.
13.Prepare an annual report on the implementation of
EGS in the Block.
14.Assist the “Intermediate Panchayat” in discharging
its functions under this Act.
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15.Any other work that may be assigned to the Programme


Officer by the District Programme Coordinator or the State
Government.

Note: “All or any” of the functions of the Programme Office can be


delegated to the Gram Panchayat by the
BOX 1 (CONT’D)

B. RESPONSIBILITIES OF THE INTERMEDIATE PANCHAYAT

1. Send “proposals” of works to be taken up under EGS to the


Programme Officer.
2. Implement projects that have been sanctioned by the
Programme Officer.
3. Approve the Block Plan and forward it to the District Panchayat
for final approval.
4. Supervise and monitor the projects taken up at the Gram
Panchayat and Block level.
5. Any other duties that may be assigned to the Intermediate
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Panchayat by the State Council.

C. RESPONSIBILITIES OF THE GRAM PANCHAYAT

1. Prepare a development plan and maintain a shelf of


possible works to be taken up under the Scheme, taking
into account the recommendations of the Gram Sabha.
2. “Register” those who are willing to work under EGS and
issue a job card to them.
3. Receive applications for work and issue a dated receipt to
the applicant.
4. Allocate work opportunities among the applicants and ask them
to report for work.
5. Display a list of persons who are being provided with work
on its notice board.
6. Implement works that have been sanctioned by the
Programme Officer.
7. Make all relevant documents available to the Gram Sabha
for the purpose of social audits.
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8. Keep a copy of the muster rolls available for public


scrutiny at the Panchayat office.
9. Prepare an annual report on the implementation of the
Scheme.

D. RESPONSIBILITIES OF THE GRAM SABHA

1. Recommend “projects” to the Gram Panchayat and make


recommendations to the GP for the “development plan” and
“shelf of possible works”.
2. Monitor the execution of works within the Gram Panchayat.
3. Conduct regular social audits of all the projects taken up within
the Gram Panchayat.

33 What is the role of the Gram Panchayat in the Employment Guarantee Scheme?

To start with, the Gram Panchayat has to process applications for “registration” and employment. This
involves registering potential workers, issuing job cards to them, receiving their applications for work,
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forwarding these to the Programme Officer, and informing the applicants as and when work is available.
Applications for registration and employment can also be submitted directly to the Programme Officer, but
normally they are expected to be submitted at the Gram Panchayat level.

As we saw, the Gram Panchayat is also the main “implementing agency”. It is expected to prepare a
“development plan” for the village and maintain a shelf of projects to be taken up under EGS, based on the
recommendations of the Gram Sabha. The Gram Panchayat also executes these projects, as and when
they are sanctioned by the Programme Officer. All the relevant documents, including the muster rolls, are to
be made available to the Gram Sabha for the purpose of “social audits”. Monitoring of EGS works
implemented by the Gram Panchayat is the responsibility of the Gram Sabha and the Programme Officer.

34 What is the role of the Gram Sabha in the Employment Guarantee Scheme?

The Gram Sabha is expected to monitor the work of the Gram Panchayat, and also to participate in the
planning process. In particular, the Gram Sabha will discuss and prioritise the works to be taken up,
conduct regular social audits of all works carried out in the Panchayat, and verify that all the relevant norms
are being observed. Resolutions of the Gram Sabha will be given priority in the planning of EGS works by
the Gram Panchayat and the Programme Officer.
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35 What happens above the Block level, say at the District and State levels?

At the District level, the supervision of the Employment Guarantee Scheme is the responsibility of the
“District Coordinator”. The District Coordinator is expected to “coordinate” the work of the Programme
Officers, for instance by consolidating their respective “plans” into a District-level shelf of projects [Section
14(3)(b)]. The District Coordinator is also expected to prepare a “labour budget” every year during the
month of December, for the next financial year. Other responsibilities of the District Coordinator include
conducting regular inspections of the works in the District, sanctioning works that are not within the
jurisdiction of Programme Officers, assisting the District Panchayats, and preparing an annual report to the
State Council.

At the State level, the Employment Guarantee Scheme is to be monitored by a State Employment
Guarantee Council (or “State Council” for short). The State Council is essentially an advisory body for the
State Government. For instance, the State Council is expected to advise the State Government on the
“schedule of rates” (payment rates for piece-rate work), the level of the unemployment allowance, and
monitoring arrangements. Other key responsibilities of the State Council include preparing a list of
“preferred works” to be taken up on a priority basis, conducting evaluations of EGS, and preparing an
annual report to be laid before the State Legislature.
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Finally, the Act calls for the creation of a National Employment Guarantee Council (or “National Council” for
short). The functions of the National Council are similar to those of the State Council, at the national level.
The National Council monitors the implementation of the Act country-wide, advises the Central Government,
and prepares an annual report to be laid before Parliament.

F. TRANSPARENCY AND ACCOUNTABILITY

36 Have any safeguards against corruption been included in the Employment Guarantee Act?

Yes, the Act includes various provisions for transparency and accountability. For instance, job cards are to
be issued to all labourers; wages are to be paid “directly to the person concerned and in presence of
independent persons of the community on pre-announced dates”; muster rolls and other relevant
documents are to be made available for public scrutiny; regular social audits of all EGS works are to be
conducted by the Gram Sabhas; and so on. Further, the Employment Guarantee Act goes hand in hand
with the Right to Information Act (also enacted in mid-2005). The right to information is an important tool for
fighting corruption and is essential for the success of the Employment Guarantee Act. The NREGA 2005
includes an “anti-corruption clause”.

37 What is this “anti-corruption clause”?


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This clause essentially states that in the event where the Central Government receives any complaint of
“improper utilization of funds” and is “prima facie satisfied” that there is a case, it can “order stoppage of
release of funds to the Scheme” [Section 27(2)].

38 What does the Act say regarding the accessibility of EGS accounts and records to the public?

There are three basic provisions for this. First, the Act clearly states that “all accounts and records relating
to the Scheme shall be made available for public scrutiny”, and that anyone is entitled to a copy of these
documents after paying “such fee as may be specified in the Scheme” [Schedule I, Para 16]. Second, a
copy of the muster rolls is to be made available for inspection at the offices of the Gram Panchayat and
Programme Officer, against payment of “such fee as may be specified in the Scheme” [Schedule I, Para
17]. Third, the Gram Panchayat is supposed to provide all relevant documents (including “the muster rolls,
bills, vouchers, measurement books, copies of the sanction orders and other connected books of accounts
and papers”) to the Gram Sabha for the purpose of conducting social audits [Section 17(3)].
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Access to all these documents can also be sought under the Right to Information Act 2005. The provisions
of this Act are very strong, and go much beyond the transparency provisions of the NREGA 2005 in many
respects. For instance, there is a cap on the fees that can be charged for supplying photocopies of public
documents. The Right to Information Act also has extensive provisions for “mandatory disclosure” of public
documents (i.e. making these documents available in convenient form for public scrutiny without waiting for
anyone to ask for them). Last but not least, the Right to Information Act provides for stiff “penalties” against
officers who fail to supply information as prescribed. Thus, the Right to Information Act powerfully
supplements the transparency provisions of the NREGA 2005. Skilful use of the Right to Information Act is
an essential tool of effective implementation of the Employment Guarantee Act.

G. OTHER QUESTIONS

39 Are women likely to get a fair share of employment under the Employment Guarantee Scheme?

The Act states that “priority” should be given to women in the allocation of work, “in such a way
that at least one-third of the beneficiaries shall be women” [Schedule II, Para 6]. What is not very
clear is how this “quota” is to be implemented in the event where the proportion of women among
all applicants is less than one third. The best thing to do is to encourage women to apply, and
facilitate their applications, to ensure that this situation does not arise. In areas with a strong
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tradition of women’s employment outside the household, it is likely that women will account for
more than one third of all applicants. In other areas, however, this may require pro-active steps to
facilitate their participation in the Employment Guarantee Scheme.

40 What happens if the responsible officers (e.g. the Programme Officer) fail to perform their duty under the
Act?

Ideally, there should be explicit penalties against responsible officers in the event where they fail to perform
their duty under the Act. And there should be stiff penalties for gross violations of the Act, such as refusal to
register someone’s application for work, of failure to pay the unemployment allowance. Unfortunately, the
Act is quite weak in this respect. All it says is that “whoever contravenes the provisions of this Act shall on
conviction be liable to a fine which may extend to one thousand rupees”. It may be possible to ensure that
the Rules to be framed by State Governments include stronger penalties.

()()()()()
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