Three BJP ruled states – Assam, Manipur and Arunachal Pradesh share the top three spots for non-utilisation of central funds allocated under various projects.
Taking a strong note of this New Delhi has asked the governments of Northeastern states for utilization certificates.
The Centre has decreased the amount of central funds to the Northeastern states following the fact that the states were not able to submit utilisation certificates over various central government projects.
Government officials said that inability to submit UC had compelled the Centre to stop releasing funds which in turn affected the progress of several important central projects.
An amount of Rs 1394.50 crore remains unspent amongst all the Northeastern states in the current fiscal.
Top amongst the states for non-utilisation of central funds is Assam. According to the government statistics, Assam has not been able to submit utilization certificate of Rs 384.33 crore in this current financial year.
Assam is being followed by Manipur which has not been able to submit US of Rs 246.20 crore and Arunachal Pradesh Rs 228.93 crore.
Ministry of Development of North Eastern Region (DoNER) allocates funds to the North Eastern States under its scheme of Non-Lapsable Central Pool of Resources (NLCPR-State) against specific projects approved by the Ministry. The State Governments in turn transfer these funds to the implementing agencies.
“Subsequent releases are made based on the utilization certificate furnished by the State Governments as per the provisions of the General Financial Rules. While some projects are implemented in time, the other projects get delayed because funds are not transferred to them in time and the works are hampered due to the short working season,” officials said.
The government records further said Meghalaya has not been able to submit utilization certificate of Rs 115.40 crore, Mizoram Rs 114.13 crore, Nagaland Rs 105.85 crore, Tripura 114.20 crore and Sikkim 85.46 crore.
Officials said that the guidelines of NLCPR scheme were revised wherein only token amount of Rs.10.00 lakh is released at the time of sanction of the project and the balance amount is released towards the first installment on receipt of the copy of award of work and tender.
“Subsequent releases are made only after utilization of 80 percent of the last release and 100 percent utilization of the amount released preceding the last release. Submission of utilization certificate and transfer of funds to implementing agencies are intensively monitored with State Governments,” officials said.