The NPF on Wednesday said the Nagaland government has increased pro rata cut from the non-plan fund for 2021-2022 to 20% in the name of Covid19 expenses despite the Centre allocating a number of funds.

The Nagaland government, in an office memorandum on May 6, said it had decided to curb down 20% non-development expenditure from government departments in order to mobilise funds for fighting the COVID-19 pandemic.

Expressing serious concern over the alleged ‘financial management’ of the state government, the Naga People’s Front (NPF), in a release, said the government has not shown any of its collections and expenses of the 2020-2021 state budget.

The NPF said the 15% pro rata cut from non-plan collections in 2020-21 and how it was spent were also never disclosed in public domain.

The party also said 20% pro rata cut from non-plan for the year 2021-22 remained a secret.

It said normally, the plan and non-plan chargeable heads are under different categories of funding.

The party said there was no sign of any developmental activities from out of the plan fund in the state after exhaustion of the non-plan fund from the pro rata cut. It said the public should ponder upon how and where the government had spent it.

“And now, the government had cut 20% from the non-plan in the name pro rata cut,” it stated.

The NPF alleged that the health centres in the district headquarters or in the sub-divisions in the rural areas have no allocations in the name of Covid19.

It was learnt that despite setting up of district disaster management authority in various districts, there was no proper fund allocation which was supposed to be given to various management authority as they are considered the main ground level workers, the party stated.

The party asked the government to give due recognition and allowances to the village councils/town ward councils/municipal councils and various other civil societies and NGOs, who are the main warriors during this pandemic, for their services.

The frontline workers, particularly medical/security/police personnel who have been putting in extra efforts, should be given extra recognition and allowances too, it stated.

It said the government should not take any advantage of the pandemic for its personal benefit at a time when the people, churches and civil societies are doing their best in terms of monetary, spiritual, material and physical help.

“The government should give all its resources and efforts in fighting the pandemic together,” the party stressed.

The party reminded chief minister Neiphiu Rio, who is heading the government for the fourth time, ‘with the ever-increasing continuation of the mismanagement of the state fund and corruption’, he has time and again proved wrong in the eye of the public.

The NPF urged the government to be sincere and serious enough as worst times are likely to hit the state if the present trend of corruption continues.

Bhadra Gogoi

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