Planning Dept: Rs 3.45 cr for stationeries in 1 year

Planning Dept: Rs 3.45 cr for stationeries in 1 year
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Dimapur, August 28: The PDR has revealed that the State Planning Department has utilized a total of Rs 3.45 crores on stationary computers, printers, administrative expenses and consumables from March 1, 2017 to March 31, 2018.
The amount of Rs 3.45 crores was arrived at after totaling the amounts released through Drawal Authorities dated 1 March 2017, 9 March 2017 (2 DAs), 18 March 2017 (6 DAs), 1 August 2017, 24 August 2017, 15 January 2018 (2 DAs), 22 March 2018, 23 March 2018 (2 DAs) and 26 March 2018, the PDR said.
Out of the total amount, Rs 27,48,875 have been released twice (totalling to Rs 54, 97,750) on the same date 15 January 2018 under DA No. 47 and 51 “for procurement of CNC machine, computers, accessories and consumables under GIS & Remote Sensing Centre.” Both the DA numbers have been overwritten with a pen over DA number 49, it said in a press release.
The PDR was reacting to the reply of the Planning & Coordination Department to PDR through local dailies on August 22.
PDR said people are aghast at the amount of Rs 16,25,000 utilized by the department for purchase of computers, consumable items and stationery out of the Rs 20 lakh released for financial assistance to UPSC candidates during 2016-17 under CMCF.
The release said it is surprising that a meager amount was utilized for the intended purpose (UPSC candidates) while the bigger amount was spent for other purposes not earmarked.
“When the Department was unable to utilize the bigger amount of the earmarked fund owing to very less amount of financial assistance provided to the
UPSC candidates, the government further increased the fund allocation from Rs 20 lakh to Rs 25 lakh during 2017-18,” it said.
PDR said during 2017-18, only Rs 2,75,000 was utilized and the remaining Rs 22,25, 000 was carried forward to the current financial year. “Looking at the trend of amount utilization for the last two financial years when Rs 4 lakh was hardly utilized each year, the remaining balance of Rs 22 lakh (without further fund allocation) could well be utilized for another 4-5 years provided the number of candidates given financial assistance remain within 10-15 and the amount fixed at Rs 25, 000 per person,” it said.
However, since UPSC candidates in other states get financial assistance even to the tune of Rs 1 lakh per person, PDR said the Government may consider increasing the amount of financial assistance to each person if allocation of funds for UPSC candidates are to continue even when there is a clear existing balance of Rs 22 lakh which is more than enough to cover the next few financial years.
On the Department assertion that Rs 1 crore was allocated to Planning & Coordination Department for works executed under Evaluation Department by Finance Department to reduce procedural delays and avoid lapse of funds since the amount was released during the last days of the financial year 2017-18, the PDR said this clarification reflects that the Evaluation Department is incapable of honouring DAs issued by the Finance Department during final days of the financial year.
“If the trend is to continue then the PDR sees no reason why separate demand number should continue to be allocated to the Evaluation Department since it has exhibited its inability to honour a simple DA. If Planning Department can withdraw amounts even during the fag end of the financial year, then what made it impossible for the Evaluation Department to carry out its normal duty of drawing money from the government treasury,” it asked.
Appreciating the Planning Department for releasing the list of beneficiaries under CMCF “even though it is yet to see the list since it was not published in the local dailies,” PDR hoped that the Planning Department would function in a transparent manner and provide financial assistance to deserving beneficiaries rather than favouring some during selection of beneficiaries.
(Page News Service)