DIMAPUR: The Nagaland horticulture department made inadmissible advance payment of Rs 10.62 crore to suppliers and also paid Rs 12.14 crore to the contractors without actual execution of works, said the CAG report tabled in the Nagaland assembly on March 28.

The report said a performance audit on ‘mission for integrated development of horticulture’ was conducted during September 2019 to April 2021 covering the period from 2014 to 2020.

The CAG also found that inadmissible assistance of Rs 11.44 crore was extended to the beneficiaries under post-harvest management.

The report said annual action plans were prepared without conducting base line survey, seed/ planting material sub-plan and district-wise sub-plans.

It added that while planting materials worth Rs 14.72 crore were procured from non-accredited nurseries/local suppliers, 400 out of 841 beneficiaries reported short receipt of them.

The report said the Centre of Excellence, constructed at Yisemyong in Mokokchung district at a cost of Rs 5 crore, was leased out to a private firm, adding an amount of Rs 5 crore released for creation of three centres of excellence in Phek, Tuensang and Dimapur was diverted without the approval of the government of India.

The CAG report suggested to the state government that it may prepare the perspective plans and annual action plans after conducting baseline surveys and by consolidating district-wise sub-plans.

It recommended that the government may take appropriate steps in regard to diversion of project funds for other purposes, non-verifiable nurseries, leasing out the nursery without the consent of the department, short execution of missing and hardening chambers and tubular structure, short distribution of planting materials, non-disbursement of maintenance allowance, issuance of incorrect completion certificate along with the false reporting to the government of India, excess payments and short supply, payments made without actual execution of works and extending excess assistance for construction of pack houses and fix responsibility in these cases.

The CAG suggested that the state government may strengthen financial management and carry out proper analysis of financial data to avoid discrepancies in various financial documents.

It also recommended that the government streamline the procurement process to safeguard its financial interest by following extant financial rules and introduce an effective monitoring system to avoid non/short execution of works/projects, short distribution of planting materials, etc.

Bhadra Gogoi

Bhadra Gogoi is Northeast Now Correspondent in Nagaland. He can be reached at: bhadragogoi@yahoo.com