Implementation of 41 Centrally Sponsored Schemes

It is not any prerogative but the duty of States/ UTs in the interest of the general public to implement Centrally Sponsored Schemes which aim at achieving various social objectives like poverty reduction, improving health services, raising food production and the like. In this connection, whatever detailed mechanism is evolved by the Union Ministry of Rural Development, that must be followed in letter and spirit for effective implementation by the respective States / UTs. Due seriousness, therefore, needs to be shown in respect of the implementation process by constituting the requisite committees at UT level as also at district levels in terms of District level District Development Coordination and Monitoring Committees (DISHA). Not only this, meetings at regular intervals are a must to be convened to assess the levels of progress in implementation. In such meetings, therefore, besides discussing several connected issues, ways and measures could also be devised for bringing about improvement, if required, in the process. In this connection, however, what is observed is that meetings in the UT of Jammu and Kashmir are not regularly being convened hence the level of progress made in implementation process is precisely not known at any given point thus leading to delays and deferments .
Guidelines for the DISHA are focussing on the process of periodic reviews in respect of implementation of 41 Centrally Sponsored Schemes while the meetings at District levels DISHA are required to be held at least once in every quarter . That will obviously give a sense and a quick feel of overall district position in respect of the progress of these schemes. It is, however , usually found that a mindset of according not the requisite importance and due attention by the concerned UT authorities is seen in respect of most of even the Flagship schemes under Centrally sponsored mechanism undertaken in Jammu and Kashmir. In other words , going contrary to the Union Ministry’s guidelines in not convening regularly appraisal meetings is tantamount to defeating the very purposes of such schemes and the social objectives there-from. Central Government having a larger stake in terms of funding such schemes in good measure while the UT Government having a limited stake or share in funding enjoins upon the UT Government to arrange compliance with the guidelines, the objective being the fruits of such schemes reaching the targeted groups of the society.
Quality of expenditure, optimization and proper end use of public funds, monitoring different programmes’ implementation, ensuring proper cooperation and close liaison between different agencies responsible or implementation process and addressing disparities which come under participative governance or Minimum Government and Maximum Governance to be fully focussed and addressed are a hallmark and broader guidelines for proper implementation process. It is likely that whatever was deliberated upon and areas of shortcomings found in the previous meeting are required to be discussed in the next one to see how many were attended to and what was the Action Taken Report (ATR) all about. On the other hand, should the state or UT Government not spend the funds allotted by the Central Government for implementation of any of these schemes, further release of funds could be delayed . Equally, if the State or UT Government has not contributed its share in the scheme fund , the Central Government can stop releasing any further fund. Hence, the importance of convening periodic UT level and District level meetings and making known the minutes on the web portal suitably is a mandatory process . Besides, these forums are to be seen in the context of all these issues to be addressed so that schemes were implemented smoothly.
About evolving the agenda by each DISHA committee , its own system is required to be evolved thus giving it fairly an autonomy in deciding priorities at District levels focussing on targets and the ways how within timelines the same could be achieved. Therefore, the District authorities, the Deputy Commissioners , concerned Member of Parliament etc must be in close liaison and understanding about DISHA meetings and the agenda to be deliberated upon so that the objectives as per the guidelines in respect of the centrally sponsored schemes were fulfilled. Deputy Commissioners are liable to be held responsible in case non adherence to the guidelines were found to be galore.