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Delayed DoNER projects scrapped

By Staff Reporter

GUWAHATI, Dec 4 - A number of projects of DoNER in North East which have been delayed by more than five years have been dropped.

North Eastern Council (NEC) secretary Ram Muivah today told The Assam Tribune there are at least two to three such projects in each of the North East states.

�They have been delayed due to various reasons. One of the factors of course is delay in submission of utilization certificate. If there is any liability, it will be borne by the respective state government. However, we have not dropped the road projects, some of which are even ten years old,� he said.

Meanwhile, addressing a press conference on the sidelines of the second meeting of the �NITI Forum for North East�, DoNER Minister Dr Jitendra Singh said that the entire budget of his ministry last year � which comes to around Rs 2682 crore � was spent on time unlike in the past.

Admitting that there have been delays in the past in submission of utilization certificates, Singh said guidelines have been changed to expedite the process and make it more transparent.

�We have been telling the states to give the necessary clearances and submit the UCs on time. A UC portal has been developed. Now submission and receipt of UCs have become online, cutting down the delay. We also send reminders online. There are disincentives for delays,� he said.

He further said there are no queries from the Central government regarding DPRs. The DPRs are being approved by the state level empowered committee headed by the chief secretary.

�We are also using space technology in the form of satellite images to bring in more transparency and authenticity in Utilisation Certificates (UCs) submitted for various projects. North Eastern Space Applications Centre is working on it,� he said.

Elaborating on the new guidelines for North East projects, Singh said to ensure just-on-time release of funds, initially a token amount of Rs. 10 lakh is released and balance amount of first instalment is released after receipt of letter of award of the contract.

The DoNER is currently implementing projects worth Rs 10,200 crore in the region, of which projects to the tune of Rs 3,000 crore are new ones which are being implemented under the North East Special Infrastructure Development Scheme with 100 per cent funding from the Central government.

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