State needs Rs 3,817 cr for completion of development projects

Due to political uncertainty in J&K, where the BJP has been selling the infrastructure development card, projects worth Rs 3,817 crore have been lying incomplete.

As per the official data gathered by the planning, development and monitoring department in July on the directions of former Governor NN Vohra, at least 2,329 development projects are incomplete in 22 districts of the state. The government on September 18 divested the planning department of all powers of expenditure allocation and handed them to the finance department.

The development projects worth Rs 1,113 crore, the highest in the state, are pending in Poonch district. The works include the laying of the Mandi road, which began in 1996.

Former CM Mehbooba Mufti’s home district Anantnag tops the list of incomplete projects in Kashmir which were awarded by the erstwhile PDP-BJP government between 2015 and 2018.

In the three divisions of J&K, the previous government had left behind 2,329 incomplete projects, including 1,862 in Jammu. A number of these projects had started way back in the 1990s.

Officials say the incomplete status of projects is a great inconvenience to the people and their completion is a major challenge for the government. “The government is facing a disconnect with the people and lack of development on the ground is one of the main reasons,” they said.

In Kashmir, Rs 786 crore funds are needed for the completion of the projects, while Jammu requires Rs 2,714 crore and Ladakh region needs Rs 317 crore.

The projects have been left incomplete even after the Central government allotted a whopping Rs 80,000 crore funds for development works.

According to a report of the Parliamentary Standing Committee on Home Affairs, headed by senior Congress leader P Chidambaram, tabled in the Rajya Sabha in March at least 22 per cent of the Prime Minister’s Rs 80,000-crore development package has been released to the state government. The report said the progress on implementing the PM’s development package had been slow.

To expedite the completion of the projects, the state government on September 5 decided to set up J&K Infrastructure Development Finance Corporation for spending up to Rs 8,000 crore on completing unfinished infrastructure projects.

Pending works

Total incomplete projects            - 2,329  

Water and Irrigation                       - 1,636

Education                                            - 114

Rural Development                         - 147

Health                                                   - 105

Funds needed

Poonch                                                - Rs 1,113 crore

Anantnag                                            - Rs 200 crore

Reasi                                                     - 175 crore

Kargil                                                     - 168 crore

Leh                                                         - 149 crore

Kathua                                                  - 133 crore

[  September 27, 2018]