Sirmaur District In Himachal: Apathy of Bureaucratic Indifference – CAG

Shimla: Financial mis-management at district levels is the highlight of a report on Sirmaur district by Comptroller and Auditor General (CAG) that has done a district centric audit of one of most backward districts of the Himachal for the 2004-09 period.

The report, which was laid in the Vidhan Sabha on Monday, states, “ the total flow of funds in the district during 2004-09 and expenditure incurred was not available either with additional deputy commissioner who is the chief planning officer or with the district planning officer and other district authorities like District Rural Development Authority (DRDA).

From information on funds received and reported expenditure in certain significant departments and programs, which was collected by the auditors showed that against Rs 506.59 crores of funds provided over the 5 year period, expenditure incurred stood at 373.06 on 31st March, 2009.

Significant shortfall in expenditure was observed against Pradhan Mantri Gram Sadak Yogna, where against Rs 146.30 crore of funds provided, expenditure incurred was only 38.93 crores.

While funds (Rs 44 lakhs) for AIDS control program were fully utilized but out of the Rs 9.35 crore for sectoral decentralized planning only Rs 86 lakh had been spent.

Under Sarav Shiksha Abhiyan (SSA), against Rs 47.5 crore of funds expenditure was Rs 38.83 crore, for National Rural Health Mission out of Rs 7.37 crore expenditure was 2.03 crore, MLA funds of Rs 6.25 crore only Rs 1.31 was spent and out of the Rs 50 lakhs for e-governance provided for nothing was spent.

After auditing the accounts, CAG comments, “in the absence of a integrated system of internal checks and controls of receipts, utilization and accounting of developmental funds there were huge sums lying unutilized and there was also a big gap between the funds released and funds reported as utilized.”

A review of education status, especially in implementation of SSA, showed that while schools for primary and upper primary level (upto VIII standard) increased but enrollment in the targeted 6-14 age group decreased during 2004-09. In high schools also students in class IX to XII declined from 22,237 in 2005-06 to 20,436 in 2008-09.

On the school infrastructure in the district, the CAG observation is, “ facilities available in 140 high and senior secondary schools are deficient as 5 schools do not have pucca buildings, 9 are running without electricity connection, 43 have no separate labs for science subjects, 104 do not have separate toilets for boys and girls, 7 schools do not have safe drinking water and 18 schools do not have spacious playgrounds.

Whereas it is mandated that the Director Education needs to inspect the schools once a year, however neither the Director Education nor any officer authorized by him visited any school in the district during 2004-09, the auditor’s report.

Against a state literacy of 77% the district had a literacy level of 71 percent and of the 70439 families as many as 13695 (19%) were marked as below poverty line (BPL)

For health infrastructure the district had 3 community health centers (CHCs), 36 primary health centers (PHCs) and 145 sub-centers (SCs), and the auditors found that besides the PHCs, the other institutions were below prescribed norms.

With “non-availability of adequate number of skilled manpower, the purpose of setting up the health centers was not achieved in the district,” the report comments adding, “ the aim of providing accessible and affordable healthcare to people remained to be achieved.”

Photo Credits: CAG Report On Sirmaur District

As Editor, Ravinder Makhaik leads a team of media professionals at Hill Post. Spanning a career of over two decades in mass communication, as a Documentary Filmmaker, TV journalist, Print Media journalist and with Online & Social Media, he brings with him a vast experience. He lives in Shimla.

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1 Comment

  1. says: ML.Verma

    By tabling district wise CAG reports in each session of assembly likely to expose more bungling and misappropriation in govt funds beside it would help to book the culprit and pin point errant officers who are making mockery of system today.

    It would enable the media persons to cover the intensive exercise of AG more precisely in their efforts which itself reflect form the above peace by Makhaik sir.

    I hope that people of this state would further seek information from concerned authority exploring each fact through RTI on the base of CAG report which is available on price tag or Rs 75. It would furher expose corrupt and accomplished who were gutting funds and breaking chairs by thriving on the public money. The CAG information in Media coverage could be further verified by the target groups in congruity to media reports by seeking RTI on specific points .

    I think economic and educational backwardness making this district worth than hell. Another glaring key information released by CAG on Sirmour is missing or gutting of Scholarship funds meant for performing students.

    Here is interesting fact about one bureaucrat who has been having enshrined by successive government in the state with various key portfolios. during his posting in PRI he has emulated Kerala IT modal for Gram Panchayat develoment by purchasing Thousands of PCs to link GP with IT services even number of them were then running without roofs, without electricity and manpower. The ideal floated hit red lines in news papers but remained noncommissioned so far when PCs were beating dust lying in one corners of stores and junkyard or might be auctions in lack of use.
    .
    The same officer shifted without fixing any responsibility for Kerala model to another key department the health. The officer again hit red lines in news papers by acclaiming free ambulance services to role on the road very soon. The deal singed with wel known MNC in media flare take last sigh in the mid. the officer did not utter single word over dismissal of MOU.

    Now same project has been switch over to new hype likely to be deflated very soon as no progress seems on the ground even ICU ambulances were being replaced by HRTC buses carrying injured in blood pools each passing day. The plan remained on the papers and succumbs before they should role out in reality.
    The such officers often remained immune to CAG. Likely to be cover in social audit so that their performance should be fixed by equating it with remuneration render on them beside their rank and file.

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