Impact of DPAP

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Evaluations have shown the DPAP to be working well, though the

performance is uneven. The transfer of funds directly to district rural

development agencies and the involvement of the community through user

groups and NGOs has tended to discourage misappropriation of funds. In

cases where local offi cials and the local elite have strong infl uence, they can

in principle and have in practice misutilized the funds. Local offi cials have

contributed to diverting funds through providing misleading information

about the status of work undertaken. In general, though, as noted by Rao

(2000), context-specifi c factors have affected the performance of DPAP.

In Gujarat, committed NGOs led to positive outcomes, while in Madhya

Pradesh, success emanated due to a tradition of community participation

in tribal regions. On the other hand, as noted by Mahapatra (2001), large

sums of DPAP funds, up to 30 per cent to 40 per cent, were diverted in the

state of Rajasthan.

Design-related implementation problems of the DPAP are, in part, due

to efforts at making it more participatory, which has tended to contribute

to its success while making implementation diffi cult in other situations.

For example, there have been problems in identifying suitable project

implementation agencies in several cases. Administrative fi eld staff typically

have no incentive in pursuing participatory approaches, leaving planning

and execution of schemes to district offi cials. Strict orientation towards

achieving physical targets has also led to too little time to undertake and

promote social organization.