Dharmendra flays Odisha govt for demanding central funds without UC

Bhubaneswar: Union Minister Minister Dharmendra Pradhan today lashed out at chief minister Naveen Patnaik for blaming Centre over central funds without submitting utilisation certificate of various central projects.

“The chief secretary should consult me if Odisha has not received central funds even after submitting utilisation certificate. I will do my best to ensure funds for Odisha”, Pradhan stated through a social media post. “Can any central fund be sanctioned without State’s utilisation certificate”, he asked.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi who is committed for the development of eastern India, has never neglected Odisha, he said.

The chief minister is arguing that the State has not received pending central funds. But, why the district mineral funds have remained unspent?, Pradhan asked.

Despite adequate central funds for construction of toilet, 25% families are forced to defecate in open space in State. Moreover, what is the reason of shoddy progress of construction of electricity infrastructure in chief minister’s home district Ganjam even after 13 Finance Commission has provided adequate funds, Pradhan questioned?

In absence of utilisation certificate, the State government had to lose Rs 93.76 cr by the end of 2014, which was allocated for construction of Anganwadi centres. The State was able to spend Rs 1,239.23 crore less than the actual allocated amount between 2011 and 2016 under Integrated Child Development Services (ICDS).  As many as 3.58 lakh children were deprived of nutritious food even as 38.39 children were to be covered under the programme. The Chief Minister should not forget all these sensitive issues, Pradhan added.

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