Parl Panel expresses displeasure over slackness in implementing PMDP

Less than Rs 10 cr disbursed to DPs of PoK, Chhamb in one year

Mohinder Verma
JAMMU, Mar 11: Expressing displeasure over dilly-dallying approach in implementing several vital components of Rs 80,000 crore worth Prime Minister’s Development Package (PMDP), a Parliamentary Panel has asked the Union Ministry of Home Affairs to work in tandem with the State Government so as to ensure timely and effective execution of the projects.
Moreover, while conveying concern over non-furnishing of information by the Ministry on certain ongoing projects, has stressed the need for fixing specific timelines as that benefits of the schemes percolate to the people in a time bound manner.
As per the report of Department Related Parliamentary Standing Committee on Home Affairs headed by senior Congress leader P Chidambaram, which was tabled in both Houses of Parliament on March 8, 2018, the State Government was requested by the Ministry of Home Affairs to provide requisite details such as the name and Aadhaar linked bank account numbers of at least 9000 out of total 36,384 displaced families of Pakistan occupied Jammu and Kashmir (1947) and Chhamb (1967 and 1971) for disbursal of financial assistance at the rate of Rs 5.5 lakh per family.
However, the State Government could provide details of only 481 beneficiaries till March 31, 2017 after verification of their records. During automatic verification by banks through Public Finance Management System (PFMS) given bank accounts of only 175 beneficiaries were found to be linked with their given Aadhaar numbers.
“Due to this only Rs 9.33 crore could be utilized for disbursing the Central Assistance to these 175 beneficiaries during the financial year 2016-17 and remaining amount was surrendered”, the Parliament Panel said in the report, the copy of which is available with EXCELSIOR.
The intensity of dilly-dallying approach in implementation of Rehabilitation Package can be gauged from the fact that till May last year a total of 29,068 forms were distributed to the beneficiaries and against these 10,723 filled up forms were received by the concerned authorities in the State Government. However, details of only 3500 beneficiaries were sent to the Nodal Officer after verification for uploading on the PFMS. The Nodal Officer, however, could upload details of only 605 beneficiaries on PFMS till May ending.
Though the Ministry of Home Affairs has conveyed to the Parliamentary Standing Committee that financial assistance to remaining beneficiaries would be disbursed in progressive manner on receipt of authenticated details from the State Government yet the Parliamentary Panel has reiterated that MHA should persuade the State Government for providing authenticated details of beneficiaries to facilitate the timely and effective implementation of Rehabilitation Package to the tune of Rs 500 crore.
About other components of PMDP, the Parliamentary Panel has observed that process for raising five IR Battalions has yet not been completed despite the fact that project was sanctioned by Ministry of Home Affairs on February 10, 2016. It has been conveyed to the Parliamentary Panel that more than one lakh applications were received for recruitment for 5 IR Battalions and the same were being scrutinized by the State Government.
As far as construction of 6000 transit accommodations in Kashmir valley for Kashmiri Migrants is concerned, the Parliamentary Panel has been conveyed that work on construction of 400 transit accommodations was going on while as about 723 kanals of land has been identified by the State Government in seven districts of Kashmir valley for remaining transit accommodations. However, neither land acquisition process has been completed nor construction work started.
“Out of total package of Rs 80,068 crore under PMDP, projects of Rs 67,047 crore have been sanctioned and an amount of Rs 17,913 crore has been released to the State Government. Seven projects are at different stages of implementation”, the Parliamentary Panel has observed and sought to know status of other already sanctioned projects.
“The Ministry of Home Affairs should work in tandem with the State Government to ensure timely implementation of projects under PMDP”, the Parliamentary Panel has recommended. Moreover, while expressing concern over non-furnishing of information on certain already initiated projects,  it has stressed the need for fixing specific timelines so that benefits percolate to the people in a time bound manner.
It is pertinent to mention here that observations of the Parliamentary Panel have raised several questions vis-à-vis capacity of the State Government to implement Rs 80,000 crore worth PMDP in a time bound manner.