‘Institution fails to achieve targets under seed capital fund scheme’
Srinagar, Sep 25: A special audit ordered by the Jammu & Kashmir Government has pulled up the authorities of Entrepreneurship Development Institute (EDI) for lack of research in the institution.
The audit report, a copy of which is in possession of Precious Kashmir, has pointed out that EDI has not done any research so far despite having seven trained faculty members holding doctorate. “One of the important functions of J&K EDI as per the objectives mentioned in the Memorandum of Association is conducting and sponsorship of research in the field of entrepreneurship development. However, as per the records available to the audit, the faculty appointed in JKEDI has not conducted any research so far,” reads the report submitted to the Financial Commissioner, Finance Department.
It’s in place to mention here that JKEDI has a trained faculty of 7 PhD holders but nothing has been published in the name of research till date.
The audit has also revealed that the EDI has not been able to achieve year-wise targets under the seed capital fund scheme. “Audit observed that the year-wise target has not been achieved by the institution under the scheme which indicates that JKEDI has not taken any concrete steps for achieving the targets,” it states.
According to the report, the total target under the scheme for four years (04/2016 to 03/2020) was 8722 units against which EDI trained 6966 educated unemployed young men and women for assistance under the scheme.
Out of them, cases of 4803 beneficiaries were approved by the steering committee for disbursement of seed capital in their favour but only 3911 cases of beneficiaries were forwarded to the Bank with seed money through payees account cheques to the tune of Rs 14220.41 lakhs.
Out of that amount, J&K Bank only disbursed Rs 9071.42 lakhs and cheques of 1476 beneficiaries of amount of Rs 5148.98 lakhs were returned by the Bank, the audit states.
“Thus only Rs 9071.42 lakhs were actually disbursed among 2444 beneficiaries,” the report states, adding that this reveals that a large number of cases were not entertained by the Bank.
This, according to the audit, shows that EDI has not created its own monitoring and evaluation to keep a watch on the functioning of the scheme.
The audit has also made similar observations on the Youth Start Up Loan Scheme started in 2013-14.
The JKEDI was established by the government in March 1997 for entrepreneurship development in the State. The institute started its regular activities from February 2004.