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Nagaland

Rights forum exposes more financial irregularities

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By EMN Updated: Sep 29, 2017 12:25 am
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Dimapur, Sep. 28 (EMN): The Nagaland Public Rights Awareness and Action Forum (NPRAAF) has stated that the state’s department of Finance released Rs 27.25 crore on two occasions for “construction of road from Sainik School, Punglwa to Jalukie (from ODR to Intermediate lane – 28 km).”

A press release from the forum on Thursday stated: “On 14 March 2017, Rs 12.80 crore was released while on 18 July 2016, Rs 14.45 crore was released under demand no 58 – Roads and Bridges. The amounts were released under NLCPR without indicating the details of the release by DoNER. It is also not indicated whether it was 1st instalment, 2nd instalment etc thus creating a doubt about the genuineness of the release.”

It has urged the department to ‘furnish the sanction and release/s made by the DoNER ministry besides revealing the total cost of the project, amount released so far, name of the contractor/firm and whether the work has been strictly carried out as per specifications and satisfactorily.’

“In this connection, one can recall the incident at Npangreu River on 19 July 2017 when an executive engineer and an SDO were manhandled by the public while on duty to inspect the damaged subways of bridges under construction between Pungwla and Jalukie.

“While the NPRAAF do not approve of any unwarranted actions from either the public or government, the incident reveals a lot about public sufferings owing to the apathy of R and B towards public utilities such as roads and bridges which are a lifeline for the people. Even as the government talks about natural calamities as beyond its control, timely interventions in effective repairs and improvements could have saved a lot of situations avoiding public inconveniences.”

Also, it stated that the Finance department on 17 December 2016 released Rs 20 crore against “additional fund” under demand no 58 –Roads & Bridges for:

  • Construction of RCC girder bridge (double lane) on Phetso and Chuza river and extension of Dzumha bridge from single lane to double lane (Rs 13.00 crore)
  • Construction of RCC girder double bridges on Chathe, Daru, Hekhaperu and Teru in between New Chumukedima and Ngwalo (Rs 7.00 crore)

Again on 3 May 2017, it released Rs 24.47 crore under ‘State Plan’ demand no 58 –Roads and Bridges for the same project:

  • Construction of RCC girder bridge (double lane) on Phetso and Chuza river and extension of Dzumha bridge from single lane to double lane (Rs 3.76 crore)
  • Construction of RCC girder double bridges on Chathe, Daru, Hekhaperu and Teru in between New Chumukedima and Ngwalo (Rs 20.71 crore).

Informing that the ‘drawal authority was issued against the re-appropriation of fund from demand no. 27 – planning machinery vide letter no.BUD/2-27/2017-18 dated 1st May 2017’, it urged the department to ‘enlighten the public on what does it actually mean by re-appropriation of fund.’

“Also, when the FD has recently clarified that it no longer uses the nomenclatures Non-Plan, State Plan etc as per the direction of the Central Government, then why is the FD still using ‘State Plan’?

“The total amount released so far is Rs 44.47 crore (Rs 20cr+ Rs 24.47cr) for the two projects. Therefore, in the interest of transparency and public interest, the FD is also urged to provide details regarding the total cost of the project, amount released so far, name of the contractor/firm and whether the work has been carried out successfully.”

It pointed out that even as the Punglwa-Jalukie road and the RCC girder bridges on Chuza river, Dzumha, Chathe, Daru, Hekhaperu and Teru were located along the same and adjacent road, the total amount released in two years for this route comes to Rs 71.72 crore but the condition is appalling as compared to the works carried out.

“The amounts released for each project has been magnified in such a manner that it would seems like mega projects. It leaves ample room for the public to believe that more amounts have been released earlier for the same projects and hence the concerned department is urged to provide the total cost of the projects and amounts released till date, for public consumption.”

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By EMN Updated: Sep 29, 2017 12:25:22 am