MHA to choke Police modernisation funds for J&K

Neeraj Rohmetra
Jammu, Mar 13: Though Union Home Ministry has been liberal in funding the Police Modernization Plan for this militancy-infested State; the funds for the Scheme are likely to be blocked shortly due to failure of the State Government to provide Utilization Certificates (UCs) for grants released earlier to the State.
Top official sources told EXCELSIOR, “the MHA has categorically told the State Government that they would have no choice but to block the funds, in case the State fails to provide UCs for grants sanctioned during the previous years under the Modernization of State Police Forces (MPF) Scheme”.
“The MHA has been sending repeated reminders to the State Government on the subject since last year, but there is no response from the State Government. The latest reminder dated March 10, 2015 has been sent vide letter no. F.No. 21011/33/2015-PM-I”, sources said.
The reminder, whose copy is in possession of EXCELSIOR, has been issued by Deputy Secretary (PM), Amrik Singh of Union Home Ministry, which says, “the Utilization Certificates furnished by Jammu and Kashmir shall only form basis for release of funds to the State Government. The UCs for unspent balances, pertaining to the previous financial years should be forwarded at the earliest. The UCs are to be furnished by the State Police Administration through the State Home Department for onward transmission to the Police Modernization Division, Ministry of Home Affairs”.
“The statement of accounts, which has been attached with the communiqué shows unspent balances up to Rs 34.87 crores, for which UCs are pending up to 2012-13. Further MHA had released funds to the tune of Rs 101 crores for the financial year 2013-14 and the State also needs to submit the Utilisation Certificates for the Central funds and State share released utilised and unspent balances for that year”, say the documents.
Sources stated that for the year 2015-16, the budgetary allocation for MPF Scheme has not been communicated by the Union Ministry of Finance yet, but it was expected to be around Rs 595 crores. “Jammu and Kashmir along with either other North Easters States have been classified as Category ‘A’ States and receive assistance on 90:10 (Centre: State) sharing basis, while the remaining States will be provided assistance on 60:40 basis”, sources said.
The letter further says, “as per the tentative Central allocations made to the State Governments under ‘Non-Plan’ parts of the MPG Scheme for the financial year 2015-16, the Central share for Jammu and Kashmir is projected to be around Rs 37 crores, while as corresponding State share would be Rs 4.11 crores”.
The letter has also urged the State Government to formulate their State Action Plan (SAP) proposals for the financial year 2015-16 under the MPF Scheme and the proposal needs to be approved by the State Level Empowered Committee (SLEC) before forwarding the same to MHA.
Dr S P Vaid, ADGP Police Headquarters, when contacted said, “the Finance Department of the State Government hasn’t released sufficient funds for the purpose of police modernisation and therefore how can we provide the Utilisation Certificates for those years”.
Asked if the MHA had threatened to stop allocation of funds for police modernisation, he admitted, “we have been told to provide all the UCs by April 1, this year or face the consequences. For the past some year, there have been serious delays in release of funds and these have serious consequences for a militancy-infested State like Jammu and Kashmir”.


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