Chief minister Manohar Lal Khattar had released Rs. 14.30 crore for the state in 2014-15 under the discretionary fund, however, an RTI reply from the government has revealed that it has not spent a penny of this fund in Gurgaon.
The government in its reply said Rs. 8.76 crore, a whopping 60% of the entire amount was spent in Karnal, the CM’s constituency.
Chief ministers’ discretionary fund is meant to provide immediate relief during calamities, disasters and other similar incidents when the other government machinery is slow and bound by rules and regulations. The apex court in 2011 had upheld this quota stating that the power of the chief minister to give monetary relief was power accompanied with duty.
While the funds in the CM’s discretionary quota are meant exclusively for an emergency, what is surprising is that Khattar has bestowed a major part of his largesse to only six villages in Karnal for development work.
An amount of Rs. 1 crore each has been given to gram panchayats of Pundrak, Kalampura, Rattangarh, Zarifa Viran, Kacchwa, and Dabri.
In comparison, villages and cities and towns in the Gurgaon district, which voted for the BJP, received nothing from the chief minister’s fund.
The failure of the state to spend funds in Gurgaon has not gone down well with the people of Gurgaon. It has led to apprehensions that Khattar could repeat what the erstwhile CMs in Haryana did — shower favour on their own constituencies.
RTI activist Harinder Dhingra, who filed the RTI application, has alleged that the situation is the same across all parties and that all chief ministers have been consistent in favouring their constituencies.
“During the Chautala government, Hisar was the favourite. When Bansi Lal became chief minister, all development happened in Bhiwani and Rohtak was known to be the CM’s city,” said Dhingra.
State Congress chief Ashok Tanwar, who was in Gurgaon on Monday, alleged that the Khattar government had failed not only Gurgaon but the entire state. “Why did Gurgaon lose to Karnal in the smart city race? Where are the promised Gurgaon Development Authority and the Dwarka Metro? This government is selective in giving compensation and growth and development has come to a standstill,” he said.
Several local business leaders also said that this discrimination should stop as Gurgaon is the economic powerhouse of Haryana.
Bhupeshwar Dayal, officer on special duty to Haryana CM, said, “We will look into the details of the information received. However, the government led by the CM is committed to developing Gurgaon and the Happening Haryana summit is a major initiative. We plan to introduce the Dwarka Metro and money won’t be a constraint for the city.