Tamilnadu Chief Minister J Jayalalithaa today urged the Centre to ensure that the State's first instalment of Rs 138.58 crore, under the National Rural Drinking Water Programme (NRDWP) during the year 2012-13, is released without any further delay.
In a letter to Union Minister of Rural Development, Drinking Water and Sanitation Jairam Ramesh, a copy of which was released to the press, the Chief Minister said, 'With reference to your letter dated 4 July regarding the release of funds under the NRDWP, I would like to point out that the closing balance of funds under the NRDWP for Tamilnadu was Rs.243.86 crore as on 31 March, 2012. Of this amount, the State received Rs 58.33 crore on 3 March, 2012 as an incentive fund for good performance based on Management Devolution Index.'
'Further, an additional allocation of Rs 98.20 crore was received on 4 April, 2012, based on the good performance and considering the fact that the 60 per cent of the available funds were used under the NRDWP.'
The Chief Minister further stated in her letter, 'you may recall, you had written to me about this on 29 March, 2012. In addition, a further sum of Rs 12.24 crore was received under the NRDWP Calamity Fund on 4 April 2012. Therefore, a total sum of Rs 168.77 crore was received in the months of March and April, 2012.'
'I would also like to inform you that for the period from 1 April, 2012, to date, we have spent a sum of Rs.87.45 crore under the National Rural Drinking Water Programme. Your Ministry’s Integrated
Management Information System (IMIS) also shows the expenditure as Rs 50.71 crore as on 30 June, 2012'.
'Tamilnadu also came in for high praise during the Conference of State Ministers and State Secretaries on 24 and 25 May, 2012, which you had chaired. You had, in fact, commended the Tamilnadu model in accounting and auditing for emulation by other States', she said.
'In the meeting you had also pointed out that States should not be held
responsible for NRDWP funds released at the fag end of the earlier financial year, resulting in higher Opening Balance and directed that the first instalment should be released to all eligible States by 5 June, 2012. While the State government was expecting an early release of funds based on the assurance given by you in the conference, your letter of 4 July, 2012, has come as a rude shock. This is more so in the context wherein for some other States which had a higher opening balance than Tamilnadu and whose expenditure level was almost on par with Tamilnadu as per your own IMIS report, a substantial amount of money has been released during 2012-13 as well. Such differential treatment and discrimination leads me to wonder whether the release of funds is being done on a purely objective basis.'