Punjab sanction Rs 429.95 Crore for the development of border, Kandi areas

Chandigarh/August 4 (NG News)

Punjab government on Monday sanctioned Rs 429.95 Crores to implement welfare schemes for poor people living in border and Kandi areas of the state to ensure overall development of these areas.

A Punjab government spokesperson said that Chief Minister Parkash Singh Badal has approved a comprehensive plan of Rs 429.95 crore for the implementation of the welfare schemes in the right earnest aimed at ameliorating the lot of the underprivileged sections of the society living there.

In separate meetings with the SAD-BJP MLAs from 16 Assembly segments of Fazilka, Ferozepur, Taran Taran, Amritsara and Gurdaspur border districts and 17 assembly segments of kandi districts of SAS Nagar (Mohali), Roopnagar, Nawanshahar, Hoshiarpur and Pathankot, Badal asked the concerned Deputy Commissioners to immediately finalize the proposals for seeking funds under Border Areas Development Fund and Kandi Area Development Fund so as to start the development works without any further any delay.

Badal asked the concerned MLAs to accord top priority to the felt needs of the general masses to ensure the funds must percolate at the grass-roots level. At the same time, the chief minister impressed upon the representatives of the people to ensure utmost transparency and accountability in the utilization of these funds so that these were spent judiciously for welfare and betterment of the people of border and kandi areas.

It was also decided in the meeting to earmark at least 10 percent of these funds to provide 24-hour domestic power supply on the urban pattern to the dhanis consisting of minimum three households in the kandi and border areas.

Badal also asked the MLAs to prioritize the works of drinking water, sewerage, and repair of hospitals, schools and colleges in their proposals for seeking funds under BADP and KADP. He also directed the Deputy Commissioners to get estimates of development works checked and verified thoroughly by the officer not below the rank of Superintending Engineer so as to ensure accountability on one hand and curb the tendency of inflated estimates on the other. He also asked the executing agencies to timely furnish the utilization certificates to avail smooth flow of funds from the government besides avoid audit objections.

Responding to the demand of the MLAs of the Kandi area for launching the lift irrigation scheme instead of the conventional tube wells, the chief minister asked the secretary Irrigation to explore the possibility of lift irrigation, drip and sprinkler in this scanty/low rainfall zone so as to ensure adequate irrigation facilities to the farmers.

The Chief Minister allotted funds to the tune of Rs 247 crore and Rs 182.95 crore for the various schemes/projects to be implemented under 13th Finance Commission and NREGS of Border and Kandi Area Development Projects respectively to ensure overall development and prosperity in these difficult areas in a holistic manner.