In the current financial year, 2,195 villages were selected for
development as Ambedkar villages by March 2010. Progress reports
received by the government, however, narrated a different story. Till
November 10, only 7 per cent villages had received electricity, 6 per
cent got concrete roads, sodium lights were installed in five per cent
villages and only 21 per cent got toilets. Under the Indira Awaas
Yojna for the poor, 12 per cent houses had been built.
Principal Secretary of Ambedkar Gram Vikas Department, Balvinder
Kumar, said: “All departments have been asked to ensure that work is
are completed by December 31.” In areas where the tender process was
delayed due to by-elections, the departments have been allowed to
complete work by January 2010, he added.
In May, immediately after the Lok Sabha elections, the government had
asked the departments to complete 55 per cent of the works — except
concrete roads and drains — by October and 70 per cent by November.
The entire project had to be completed by January 2010. Due to the
initial delay in supply of construction material and dispute over
land, the deadline was revised in August. While departments were
directed to complete at least 20 per cent work of electrification and
40 per cent work of installation of sodium lights by November, the
deadline for entire project was extended to March 31, 2010.
“Since the project is far behind the target, the deadline has been
advanced to create a sense or urgency among the departments,” said an