Govt directs all deptts to implement revised procedure of Centrally Sponsored Schemes

‘Promptly complete formalities for release of pending Central share’
Directions issued for increasing revenue realization
Mohinder Verma
JAMMU, Aug 19: Government of Union Territory of Jammu and Kashmir has directed all the departments to implement revised procedure of the Centrally Sponsored Schemes in letter and spirit and promptly complete all the formalities in order to pave the way for release of pending Central share. Moreover, instructions have been issued for increasing revenue realization and assessing performance on this aspect after regular intervals.
Official sources told EXCELSIOR that in the month of March this year, the Union Government enforced new rules thereby changing the operating procedure for all the Centrally Sponsored Schemes. The new guidelines tighten the procedure for grant allocation and increase the scrutiny on utilization of funds disbursed.
The implementation of revised procedure of the Centrally Sponsored Schemes came up for discussion in a recent meeting held under the chairmanship of Chief Secretary Dr Arun Kumar Mehta, who told all the participants that Central Government wants that for each Centrally Sponsored Scheme there should be a single point of monitoring vis-à-vis how much funds are still unspent before further releases. Moreover, for every Centrally Sponsored Scheme there should be Nodal Agency and one single account.
“All down level accounts need either to be closed or converted to zero balance based accounts with their balances recouped to the nodal account and this has to be done for all the schemes whether on agency route or treasury route. Moreover, the budget documents should also be changed so that there is separate budget line for Central and State share”, the Chief Secretary directed.
Under the new procedure, all the Union Ministries and departments will release the Central share for each Centrally Sponsored Scheme to the Government’s account held in the RBI for further release to single Nodal Agency account. Then, the State/UT Governments will transfer the Central share within 21 days and release its own share within 40 days of the release of the Centre’s share.
It is pertinent to mention here that in order to align the public funded schemes with the financial resource cycle of Central and State/UT Governments, schemes were made co-terminous with the Finance Commission cycles during the 12th Five Year Plan. The 14th Finance Commission period came to an end on March 31, 2020.
However, as the final report of the 15th Finance Commission was awaited at that time, the Union Ministry of Finance in January 2020 approved an interim extension to all ongoing schemes till March 31, 2021 or till the date of recommendations of 15th Finance Commission come into effect. Now, new guidelines have been issued for the implementation of Centrally Sponsored Schemes.
Meanwhile, the Chief Secretary has directed that re-imbursement claims should be followed with the Ministry of Home Affairs so that all the pending claims especially under Migrant Salary Component of Security Related Expenditure are settled as early as possible. Similarly, orders have been issued for expediting additional borrowing of 1% to which the Union Territory of Jammu and Kashmir is entitled to.
“The Government has further issued directions that receipt from various Union Ministries should be followed vigorously for release of pending Central share under all the Centrally Sponsored Schemes as flow of funds under the Centrally Sponsored Schemes is relatively low for the Union Territory of Jammu and Kashmir”, sources said, adding “all the departments are already under instructions to pursue aggressively for accessibility to funds and escalate such issues where the departments are facing any difficulty”.
The directions have also been issued for devising a mechanism for furnishing of Utilization Certificates to the Government of India under SAMAGRA Scheme so that funds from the Union Government are received into the Consolidated Fund of Union Territory.
Expressing concern over poor realization of revenue, the Chief Secretary directed each department to increase the revenue and continuous review meetings should be held so that revenue realization is achieved as per the targets fixed by the Government.
“Instructions have also been issued to all the Deputy Commissioners and Chief Planning Officers that any deviation in work allotment without e-tendering as admissible under rule should invite disciplinary action and such cases should be referred to investigating agencies for appropriate action”, sources said.
As bills worth several crores for rupees for the developmental works carried out Languishing Scheme are lying pending with the Jammu and Kashmir Infrastructure Development Finance Corporation, the Chief Secretary has directed that proposal for loan/funding issue of Corporation should be moved immediately for expediting completion of projects as per timeline.