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Lawmakers keen on development schemes for rural areas: TIB research

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13th-Aug-2020       
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Staff Reporter :
Lawmakers are keen on projects related to the development of rural road system, construction of bridges and culverts, a Transparency International Bangladesh research said on Wednesday.
These schemes were taken with block allocations made to lawmakers for implementing rural infrastructure development project.
TIB in their research, titled "Governance Challenges in the Implementation of the Infrastructure Development Project under Constituency-Based Block Allocation", analysed 628 schemes worth Tk 298 crore under the Important Rural Infrastructure Development Project 1 (IRIDP-1) and IRIDP 2.
"In our research we have noticed that people who have chalked out schemes, emphasised on rural infrastructures like roads, bridges and culverts," TIB executive director Iftekharuzzaman said at the virtual launching programme of the report.
"They have not taken any schemes on the important objective of the project like increasing the production of agricultural and non-agricultural products, marketing facilities
for the products and accelerating rural employment", he added.
The TIB report said that 59.5 percent schemes under IRIDP-1 were for building roads, 28.9 percent for roads and culverts, 10.3 percent for bridges or culverts and rest growth centred. On the other hand, 62.2 percent schemes under the IRIDP- 2 was for building roads, 36 percent roads and culverts, 1.8 percent bridges or culverts.
IRIDP-1 covers from March 2010 to December 2014 when each of the 300 constituencies got block allocation of Taka 3 crore each per year for five years.
The IRIDP-2 covers from July 2015 to June 2019 when 284 constituencies (excluding 16 seats in city corporation areas) got Taka 5 crore each year for four years.
The study randomly selected a total of 50 out of 300 parliamentary constituencies. One upazila of each constituency was selected through random sampling.
The research data was collected from May to December 2019 and the data analysis was done until March 2020.
It has interviewed 341 key persons including MPs, concerned government officials, local representatives, contractors and media persons. It also held 180 group discussions with beneficiaries and others.
A total of 68 percent schemes were implemented within the stipulated time mentioned in tender. While 32 percent needed extra time. Seventy-four percent schemes were done fully and 21.5 percent partially.
Only 14.5 percent of all schemes involved repairs. And of the unrepaired, 42 percent schemes were not in good condition.
No complaints were lodged against 77.6 percent schemes, said the report. Reasons were: complaints not being addressed, threats and harassments while protesting or directly complaining. And if the contractor is a relative or acquaintance or party worker of the concerned MP, people are less interested in making any complaint out of fear.

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