A case of exaggerated figures; poor planning comes to fore

  • Bhartesh Singh Thakur, Hindustan Times, Panchkula
  • Updated: Mar 20, 2015 13:03 IST

Reflecting poor planning, municipal corporation (MC) of Panchkula has spent just `14.95 crore till December 2014 on development out of `39.07 crore allocated in the last budget, it implies that 61% remained unspent.

`44 crore has been earmarked for development works in 2015-16 which is `5 core more than the last budget.

In the expenditure details, nil has been spent till December 2014 from MC funds on construction/repair of shops, fire brigade building extension, construction of meat market, construction of maintenance of slaughter house, street lights, construction/repair of community centre, purchase of tractor trolley and machinery, shifting of milk dairies and construction/renovation of library.

`8.99 crore was spent on roads against an allocation of `15 crore budget and `3.2 crore was spent for office building. On construction and repair of drains/curb channels, `44 lakh was spent against the `4 crore earmarked.

The story of income generation is similar. Against a proposed income of `75.13 crore, only `35.99 crore was generated till December, 2014 which is just 47 % of the proposed income. It is difficult to imagine how the MC would generate remaining `39.14 crore in three months from January.

Despite that it has again projected earning to the tune of `76.81 crore in 2015-16.

In the 2014-15 budget, MC estimated revenues of `45 crore from its share in stamp duty but till December it managed to raise only `23.87 crore, less than 50% of the target.

The MC could not raise a paisa from advertisement though it estimated earnings of `2 crore. Against proposed income of `2 crore from development charges it got only `54.82 lakh and in case of house tax, it earned only `1.99 crore against a target of `4 crore.

During a discussion on house tax income generation, SP Arora assured the councillors, “We will have a separate tax branch. We will conduct a proper survey for house tax.”

Bharatiya Janata Party councillor CB Goel said that targets were never completed in budget. “They always complain that they have just 2 people to do work but they must do some work. It is an unmanned organisation.”

Congress councillor Lily Bawa also commented, “We need to improve our tax collection. We need to reinforce our system.”

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