PM Narendra Modi-led NDA government has cut the budget allocation for cleaning of river Ganga – one of its pet projects -- by almost half in the Revised Estimate (RE) for the current financial year owing to the poor expenditure level, The Indian Express has reported.
According to the report, under the Namami Gange project, Rs 700 crore was allocated, and Rs 50 crore was allocated to the Ghat Beautification of Riverfronts.
"Namami Gange" is an integrated Ganga conservation mission under the National Ganga River Basin Authority of the Ministry of Water Resources, River Development and Ganga Rejuvenation which is aimed at cleaning Ganga in a comprehensive manner by involving states, urban local bodies and panchayats.
Moneycontrol could not independently verify the report.
However, the government has now left Rs 353.4 crore for the Ganga cleaning plan and only Rs 2 lakh for the ghat beautification scheme in the RE, said the report citing sources from the Ministry.
In a reply to an RTI filed by the publication, it was said that till, December 13, 2019, the Ministry was able to spend only Rs 200 crore out of 700 crore allocated for cleaning of the Holy river, while the entire Rs 50-crore allocation to the Ghat beautification plan was unspent.
Besides cleaning of Ganga, there are many other schemes that are sharing the same fate, the report suggested.
For instance, the Digital India Land Records Modernization Programme (DILRMP) of the Department of Land Resources had Rs 150 crore allocated. But, till December 23, 2019, only Rs 2.49 crore was reportedly spent.
Similarly, Pradhan Mantri Krishi Sinchayee Yojana was given Rs 2,066 crore for the current year, but only Rs 437.10 crore was spent till December 23, the report added.