Social audit is now Government’s policy and it was clearly specified in the Governor’s address in the Assembly on 24th June, 2016 stating that social audit has to be conducted for all the activities and schemes implemented under Local Self Government Department, Public Works Department and Social Justice Department.
In the meeting held on 4th July, 2016 to review the progress of KLGSDP activities, the Chief Secretary to Government has directed to take necessary steps to roll out Social Audit by KLGSDP on a pilot basis. Accordingly, a State level Social Audit Workshop was conducted during 29th – 31st August, 2016 at Thiruvananthapuram to finalise the way forward to roll out Social Audit. In the Workshop it has been decided to carry out Social Audit in three LSGIs in each District (2 Grama Panchayats & 1 Municipality) as a first phase.
It was also decided that in the first phase social audit will be carried out in 3 wards in each of the selected Local Bodies and the sectors selected for social auditing in Grama Panchayats are i) MGNREGS and ii) Anganwadis and that in Municipalities, Anganwadis alone.
Selection of Local Bodies for Pilot Social Audit: 2 Grama Panchayats and 1 Municipality from each District having willingness to cooperate and conduct social audit in their LSGs were selected (list attached).
In each selected LSG, 3 wards were selected for conducting social audit based on the following criteria – i) Higher population of SC/ST members ii) the most backward ward iii) ward headed by woman member.
Preparation of checklist for Pilot Social Audit: A checklist of the documents to be verified were prepared for the social audit activities like MGNREGS and Anganwadies, in collaboration with Tata Institute of Social Sciences (TISS) Kerala Campus. A Consultation process for finalising the checklist has to be done jointly by KLGSDP, SIRD and Tata Institute of Social Sciences (TISS), Kerala Centre.
Experimental audit was conducted at Vithura Grama Panchayat to fine tune the social audit tools.
Selection of Village Social Auditors: Social Audit at ward level shall be carried out by Village Social Auditors. There will be 5 Village Social Auditors for each ward. Out of 5 Village Social Auditors, 3 shall be women. SC/ST shall be given representation based on their population – at least one in all cases.
The composition of the Village Social Auditors shall be as follows:
- 2 auditors representing the dependents of MGNREGS workers
- 2 auditors representing dependents of Kudumbashree Ayalkoottam members
- 1 auditor from Anganwadi beneficiaries or Sabala groups.
The auditors should have a minimum qualification of Plus 2 (10th class in case of Tribal member if a candidate with plus 2 is not available.). District Coordinators of KLGSDP spearheaded the selection processes
Capacity Building for Pilot Social Audit: Three types of trainings are essentially required for the effective conduct of Social Audit :
- Orientation training for LSG functionaries covering President/Chairperson, Secretary and 3 Ward members of the wards selected for Social Audit. 3 batches of trainings were conducted KILA, Thrissur during 17th -19th October, 2016.
- For handholding Village Social Auditors during field level implementation, Resource Persons were identified and three day trainings, including field level hands on training, was imparted at SIRD, Kottarakara during 20th – 22nd October, 2016.
- Hands on training for the Village Social Auditors – This training is meant for equipping the newly selected Village Social Auditors. There will be 15 Village Social Auditors from each LSG (@ 5 Social Auditors per ward X 3). There will be about 630 participants for 42 LSGs. 3 days hands on training for 10 batches are required. These trainings shall be conducted simultaneously at SIRD and KILA
Training of Social Auditors: It was reported that there will be about 630 Village Social Auditors to implement social audit in 42 Local Bodies ( 5 Village Social Auditors per ward X 3 wards per Local Body = 15 VSAs X 42 LBs = 630 VSAs) for the training and it was commenced in the month of November, 2016. It is envisaged as a three day programme and six batches of training were conducted as detailed below:
- Batch – 1 from 10th to 12th November, 2016 at SIRD
- Batch – 2 from 15th to 17th November, 2016 at KILA
- Batch – 3 from 21st to 23rd November, 2016 at SIRD
- Batch – 4 from 24th to 26th November, 2016 at KILA
- Batch – 5 from 5th to 7th December, 2016 at KILA
- Batch – 6 from 26th to 28th December, 2016 at KILA
Conduct of Social Audit: Immediately after the training, the Village Social Auditors were engaged for field level social audit in their respective LSGs. It is a ten day process – 3 days for record verification at the LSG level, 4 days for field level auditing and 3 days for Report writing.
Out of 28, social audit was completed in 27 Grama Panchayats namely i) Vithura, ii) Kadinamkulam, iii) Sasthamkotta, iv) Kalluvathukal, v) Eraviperoor, vi) Aranmula, vii) Moonilave, viii) Palamel, ix) Veeyapuram, x) Adimali, xi) Kamakshi, xii) Kumlangi, xiii) Kaladi, xiv) Pananchery, xv) Mattathur, xvi) Amarambalam, xvii) Pallikkal, xviii) Sholayur, xix) Kuzhalmannam, xx) Peruvayal, xxi) Kadalundy, xxii) Meenangadi, xxiii) Thirunelli, xxiv) Chembilode, xxv) Kelakam, xxvi) East Eleri and xxvii) Cheruvathur.