GUWAHATI, Feb 16 � Asserting that the CAG report had demolished Chief Minister Tarun Gogoi�s claim of �transparent and effective� administration in the past decade, AGP leader Prafulla Kumar Mahanta today said that while the Gogoi Government had massive funds at its disposal, the way it was misused had no parallel in the past.
�It is true that the Gogoi Government had massive fund at its disposal contrary to what was available to the governments prior to 2001. But the way the fund was misused, it was never in the past,� Mahanta said at a press conference.
Mahanta said that despite Gogoi�s efforts to spread the canard of changing the State�s economy through his �own media houses and news channels�, the fact remained that the State was running on overdraft till 2003-04.
Referring to the CAG report, Mahanta said that Gogoi allowed his ministers to loot the State�s exchequer, with the Government hardly showing any regard to accountability. �Had it been so, why did his Government fail to submit utilization certificates amounting to Rs 5,769.83 crore in 16,760 cases?� Mahanta asked.
Attributing the State�s better finances to the new VAT regime since 2003-04 and the substantial increase in fund allocation by Planning Commission, Mahanta said that the State had the added advantage of getting higher royalty on oil and hydrocarbon. �But nothing was done to utilize the money and boost the State�s economy,� he added.
Mahanta said that had the CAG audited the expenditure of the State Government on organizing meetings to attract investment, it would be higher than the investment that has really come to the State.
Ridiculing the spurt in the laying of foundation stones, the former Chief Minister said that while Gogoi was laying foundations of over five new projects everyday, there were 38 incomplete projects in the State blocking Rs 138.33 crore as on March 31, 2010 as per the CAG report.
Mahanta also alleged that there were huge anomalies in the utilization of Rs 709 crore for minority development in the past five years. �The State received Rs 709 crore for minority development, with Nagaon alone getting Rs 76 crore. But utilization of the funds was plagued by large-scale irregularities,� he said.