Public funds ‘need to be accounted for'
Mumbai: India may be still far away in providing quality health services to the rural poor but the best answer for improvement is to establish accountability in the use of public funds and a mechanism for people to vent their grievances, say those working in the field.
Social services are run on public funds and yet an audit of these services is nil, said Aruna Roy, a member of the National Advisory Council headed by UPA chairman Sonia Gandhi. "We need a broader mechanism for accountability of public services as well as a grievance redressal system that is people-oriented."
Roy was speaking at the State Level Convention on Community Accountability of Health and Social Services attended by more than 250 delegates at the Tata Institute of Social Services.
Under the National Rural Employment Guarantee Act, community-based monitoring (CBM) of services and planning should be done by villages and "so, why is this not happening?" she asked.
Dr Abhay Shukla of the National Rural Health Mission said: "We have seen improvements in two-thirds of services where community based monitoring was implemented in a two-year period.