Odisha Sun Times Bureau
Bhubaneswar, Dec 20:
While Odisha’s BJD Government continues its tirade on ‘central negligence’, as per a recent revelation by one its ministers in the Assembly, the State Government has not been able to spend over Rs 46,000 crore in past nine years.
As per the report that Planning and Coordination Minister Usha Devi provided in the assembly in reply to a question of Rourkela MLA Dillip Ray recently, the State Government was unable to spend Rs 46,108.24 crore earmarked for various State, Central and Centrally sponsored schemes between 2006-07 and 2014-15.
Out of the Rs 13,649.84 crore budget allocation for centrally sponsored schemes between 2006-07 and 2014-15, Rs 3122.32 crore remained unspent. Similarly, the State Government had allocated Rs 8,065.64 crore for the Central schemes out of which only Rs 4,488.46 crore was spent during the period leaving aside a huge chunk of Rs 3,577.28 crore that remained unutilised.
Besides, even though the government had allotted Rs 146,887.88 crore in the past nine years for planned expenditure in state plans, a whopping Rs 39,408.63 crore remained unspent.
The opposition parties launched a scathing attack on the government after the report of the Minister was circulated in the political circle today.
“The Chief Minister only knows how to complain. The Central Governments had been giving and continue to give. This is an incompetent government. Their inability to spend the money proves their incompetence. They don’t even have a policy framework,” said Congress Chief Whip Tara Prasad Bahinipati.
“I believe the BJD Government demands more money for the sake of it. They don’t have any intention of spending it for the people. There are plenty of examples wherein money that came through various schemes went back without being spent. It is a matter of great concern that the government was not able to spend a whopping Rs 46,108 Crore,” said Senior BJP leader Suresh Pujari.
The ruling party spokesperson, however, tried to put up a brave face and attempted to defend a losing case.
“We are having trouble to spend the money because we are not receiving the grants, assistance and the money for various schemes from the Central Government on time. Further, they are not making schemes tailor made for our requirement,” said BJD Spokesperson Amar Satapathy.