Funds allocated for the Swachh Bharat Mission are lying unutilised by the three municipal corporations in the city, a a study said. This, despite the fact that chikungunya and dengue have crippled the national capital.
The ‘Delhi Citizens Handbook 2016’ prepared by the Centre for Civil Society, a think tank, says that of the three civic bodies, the North corporation failed to spend even a single penny of the Rs 46.28 crore allocated to it by the Centre under the scheme for the financial year 2015-16.
In the South Delhi Municipal Corporation (SDMC), only 0.25 % (Rs 7.93 lakhs) of the Rs 31.63 crores received, have been put to use. Currently, the entire corpus of these funds is lying unutilised,” the report stated.
Shailendra Singh, chairman of the standing committee of SDMC, said: “We have a detailed plan to spend the budget. However, it is too early a stage to be able to explain the expenditure, as the works are in process. It is only after tenders are called and floated that it will show under funds utilised.”
Pravesh Wahi, standing committee chairman (north corporation), said, “The corporation is reeling under a financial crisis. As per the rules, in order to claim the mission fund, the corporation will have to first spend 65% on the project out of its own corpus, after which it will receive 35% of the remaining amount allocated for the project.”
“At present, it is not possible for us to spend this amount. However, this does not mean that we are not looking after cleanliness. We our spending our funds on maintaining urinals and other routine activities.”
Delhi will get a total amount of Rs 360.01 crore during the course of the mission period (October 2014-19), of which it has already received Rs 139.60 crore.
The report said the mission is being poorly implemented in the city, and targets for construction of toilets and solid waste management are grossly unmet.
Also, since the beginning of the mission, no household toilets have been constructed as against a target of 30,107 by March 2016, it said.
The central government launched the mission with the aim of creating an open defecation-free nation by 2019, with Urban Local Bodies (ULBs) entrusted with its implementation.