JAMMU, AUGUST 10: Asking the administration to ensure spending in full the kitty of Rs.6000 crore under Centrally-Sponsored Schemes (CSSs), Chief Minister, Mufti Mohammad Sayeed, today said that timely holding of District Development Board (DDBs) meetings and release of adequate funds by the Planning Department has set the tone for building tempo of developmental activities and achievement of fixed timelines.
He said replacement of Planning Commission by NITI Aayog and acceptance of the 14th Finance Commission Award will have long-term implications for the planning process in the State. “We have to ensure that the state share is released and UCs submitted on time so that there are no last-minute hiccups in the implementation of the Central Schemes,” he stressed.
Mufti Sayeed who also holds the charge of Planning Department passed these directions while chairing a high-level meeting here today to review the developmental projects and overall security scenario in Jammu Division.
Deputy Chief Minister, Dr. Nirmal Singh, was also present on the occasion.
The Chief Minister, while reviewing progress of work on Jammu Cable Car and Tawi Lake Projects, Mubarak Mandi Heritage Complex, Sidhra Golf Course, Shopping Malls and Parking Lots at Panjtirthi and Jammu Bus Stand and Bikram Chowk-Presentation Convent Flyover, also laid stress on time-bound completion of all these projects.
Emphasizing upon submission of Utilization Certificates in time so that State does not face any problem in release of tranches under CSSs, the Chief Minister said with Central devolutions now available, the State Government is in a position to decide its developmental priorities. He also directed the Planning Department to ensure that Capital Expenditure Budget of the State is spent in full.
Principal Secretary, Principal, B. R. Sharma, informed the Chief Minister that there is surety of allocation and on-time release of funds under the restructured mechanism. He said sufficient funds have been placed at the disposal of concerned departments under the Central Schemes. “Earlier, the money under CSSs used to be released in multiple tranches, but this year we have been able to release allocations well in advance as the DDB meetings were held in the beginning of the financial year,” he said.
The Central Government is contemplating cutting down CSSs to a few select prestigious flagship programmes from the present 66. With this restructuring, the resources under the abolished CSSs would be subsumed into the kitty of the mega schemes.
Referring to the implementation of several flagship programmes like MNREGA in the state, Mufti Sayeed directed that convergence of MNREGA resources with available capital outlays must be ensured in an innovative manner so as to maximize benefits flowing out of the public investments. “The onus now lies on us to spend the CSSs’ kitty of Rs.6000 crore in the most judicious and transparent manner so as to ensure that public investment under the Plan is fully translated into tangible development assets on the ground,” he said.
Mufti Sayeed suggested further strengthening of monitoring mechanism by way of review meetings of DDBs, particularly by way of ensuring that timelines for execution of developmental schemes are strictly adhered to. He directed the Planning Secretary to compile a list of developmental projects that can be completed before the end of this year.
The Chief Minister chaired all the 20 DDB meetings between June 18 and July 04, during which the State Government approved new scheme of financing of District Plans which envisaged equal distribution of funds into clearing past liabilities, completion of ongoing projects and taking up new projects.
While reviewing progress on Jammu Ropeway Project, the Chief Minister issued directions for its completion in the shortest possible time. He was briefed about the ongoing work on the Upper Terminal of the Project near Bahu Fort, which is expected to be completed within the next three months.
On Patnitop Ropeway and International Yoga Centre at Mantalai, the Chief Minister directed the Chief Secretary to monitor progress so that diversification of tourism-related activities propels Jammu towards becoming an independent tourist destination.
Director Tourism, Jammu, informed the Chief Minister that the work on completion of 18-hole Jammu Tawi Golf Course at Sidhra will be completed well before the end of this year.
On the issue of construction of multi-tier parking lots and shopping mall at Panjtirthi and Jammu Bus-stand and finalization of sites for the sanctioned medical colleges, the Chief Minister was informed that these were in final stages and work on these projects will commence soon.
The Deputy Chief Minister, in his remarks, emphasized upon making people aware about developmental activities of the State Government for which all necessary details should be put in public domain. “This will also bring in greater transparency and accelerate public expenditure,” he said.
He further stressed upon steps which are required to be taken to ensure quality control in execution of developmental schemes for creation of durable public assets.
Earlier, the Chief Minister received a detailed review of developmental activities and law-and-order situation from Divisional Commissioner, Jammu, Dr. Pawan Kotwal and IGP, Jammu Zone, Danesh Rana.
The Divisional Commissioner informed the Chief Minister that Holy Amarnath Yatra is progressing smoothly, barring temporary suspensions on account of closure of roads due to incessant rains. He said the directions given by him while chairing the DDB meetings are being closely monitored in all the districts of Jammu Division.
IGP Jammu, while briefing the Chief Minister, said there was total synergy between civil and police administration in dealing with law-and-order situations.
Chief Secretary, Iqbal Khandey, Principal Secretary to Chief Minister, B. B. Vyas, Director General of Police, K. Rajendra Kumar, Principal Secretary, Home, R. K. Goyal, Divisional Heads and DIGs of all Ranges, besides Deputy Commissioners and SSPs of Jammu Division attended the meeting.