PCI team to review JK’s Special Plan Assistance

Srinagar, Nov 9: At a time when Jammu and Kashmir government is  struggling  to complete the requisite paperwork for availing Special Plan Assistance (SPA) of  Rs 2064 crore from th...

Srinagar, Nov 9: At a time when Jammu and Kashmir government is  struggling  to complete the requisite paperwork for availing Special Plan Assistance (SPA) of  Rs 2064 crore from the Centre, the Planning Commission of India (PCI) is all set to review the projects taken up by the State under SPA.
Highly placed sources in PCI told Greater Kashmir that a two-member panel of the Commission led by Deputy Adviser (State Plan) Jugal Kishore Sharma and another official Muhammad Tauqeer Khan will be visiting JK between November 12 and 14 to review SPA.
Apart from evaluating the current and ongoing projects, the panel will also see whether the projects proposed by the State for the ongoing fiscal meet the criteria of funding under SPA.
The visit assumes significance as PCI has withheld the release of entire amount approved for the State under the component.
As first reported by Greater Kashmir on October 19, failure of the state government to fulfill the requisite formalities has put the availing of the grant in jeopardy.
Despite repeated reminders right from April this year, several government departments as well as district administrations are sleeping over completing the requisite formalities.
"Despite number of requests right from April this year, the Administrative Departments and District Development Commissioners have not been able to furnish the project/scheme-wise details in the prescribed format for being uploaded under CAS-MIS system," the communiqué from the Planning Department reads.
In the same circular, the Planning & Development Department has admonished the Administrative Secretaries as well as District Development Commissioners for their "lethargic approach" on the issue.
"Any further delay in the submission of the requisite projects/scheme-wise information in the prescribed format leading to non-release of funds by the Planning Commission/Ministry of Finance, Government of India will be the responsibility of the concerned Administrative Departments and District Development Commissioners," the communiqué read.
Even the meetings conducted by the state government to get the process expedited have failed to yield desired results.
Worthwhile to mention that SPA component of the annual plan is proving to be a major headache for cash-starved JK owing to "rigid" criteria fixed for funding of the projects to be taken up under it.
Even the repeated pleas of Chief Minister Omar Abdullah for reducing the component have been turned down by PCI.

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