DIMAPUR, Aug 20 - Kohima Bench of Gauhati High Court has passed an interim order directing the Nagaland Roads & Bridges department to restore the roads and bridges in the State.
Nagaland Tribes Council (NTC) informed in a press release that the High Court Bench passed the order on Wednesday after it held its first hearing on the PIL filed by social activists ST Yapang and Odi Jamir against R&B department.
The NTC demanded that the R&B department implement the court�s directive.
In the PIL, the petitioners pointed out that the RTI reply revealed that �Finance epartment (Budget and Monitoring Cell) issued 62 withdrawal authority to the Roads and Bridges department under demand No. 58 a whopping amount of Rs 342.22 crore from May 6, 2016 to March 31, 2017.�
The PIL contended that despite the drawal of such an amount within a span of 11 months, the roads and bridges in Nagaland, particularly Dimapur, are in a deteriorated condition.
The NTC further informed that the petitioners, who are also governing body members of Nagaland Indigenous People�s Forum, had filed PIL(s) against 10 other departments � Police, Civil Supplies, Irrigation & Flood Control, Social Welfare, School Education, Rural Development, PHE, Planning, Medical and Urban Development, for allegedly drawing money without execution of works.
Despite developmental activities coming to a standstill in Nagaland due to non-allocation of funds from Centre, the NTC alleged that during the last one year (from April 2016 to March 2017), �not less than Rs 2,355.38 crore was drawn and utilised fully by 11 departments�, purportedly for public distribution and infrastructural projects excluding departmental and establishment expenditures.
In this regard, the NTC has resolved to wholeheartedly support the PIL filed by Yapang and Jamir. It listed out the departments against which PILs were filed with regard to withdrawal of funds within a span of 11 months.
The NTC said Social Welfare department withdrew Rs 222.49 crore for the purpose of payment of old age pensions, grants to blind persons, implementation of wheat nutritional programme and payment of bills for purchase of biscuits for children.
School Education department had withdrawn Rs 248.67 crore for the purpose of upgradation and construction of School buildings, Midday Meal Scheme, payment of SSA teachers� salaries and scholarships while Civil Supplies department had withdrawn Rs 12.55 crore within one month for the purpose of handling and transportation charges of AAY and BPL rice.
Similarly, the NTC alleged, some other departments had withdrawn huge amounts of money without doing developmental works.