Rs 400 crore lying unspent in education sector, says top bureaucrat

Rs 400 crore lying unspent in education sector, says top bureaucrat

Nasir Azam

Srinagar, Apr 23: A senior bureaucrat in J&K government on Tuesday revealed that Rs 400 crore were lying unspent in education sector, raising questions on spending capacity of the government.

This disclosure was made by J&K’s Principal Secretary for School Education, Asgar Samoon, who is known for plain speaking on governance issues. “Under CSS Samagra, Rs 400 crore lying unspent with directors/ ceos/zeos/MHs/ teachers; SPD may try to expedite expenditure on ground in next 4 weeks,” Samoon tweeted.

The disclosure has been made by Samoon at a time when there is complete lockdown in Jammu & Kashmir as part of the shutdown announced by the Centre to prevent spread of deadly coronavirus.

A senior official revealed that these funds are meant for civil construction works approved under the scheme.

 

“While work on some of these projects is in progress, the other works could not be taken up due to unavailability of land and other issues,” he said. Samoon also revealed that Rs 870 crore released by the Centre last year are lying with Finance department.

The Samagra Shiksha scheme was unveiled by the Centre in 2018-19 after subsuming the three erstwhile Schemes of Sarva Shiksha Abhiyan (SSA), Rashtriya Madhyamik Shiksha Abhiyan (RMSA) and Teacher Education (TE).

Under the programme, MHRD funds states and Union Territories for infrastructure and teaching staff in school education sector. The fund sharing pattern for the scheme between Centre and J&K is at present in the ratio of 90:10.