Himachal Pradesh Chief Minister Jai Ram Thakur on Friday announced to release the withheld Vidhayak Kashetra Vikas Nidhi ( MLA’s Local Area Development Fund (MLALADF) and said that first installments of this discretionary funds would be released to MLAs in month of October this year. Making a statement in the state assembly Chief Minister said that decision was taken by him on the repeated requests from the MLAs belonging to ruling and Oppositions for the last two days.
”Most of the members raised this issue during the Monsoon session urging him not withhold the fund the due installments of Rs 5O lakh per vidhan Sabha would be released by the Government soon. ” he said.
”The first Installment of Rs 25 lakh to be released in the month of October and rest installment of Rs 25 lakh to be released after the Panchayati Raj election as it would be withheld due coming into election-code in effect in November.” Thakur said.
Chief Minister said that he wanted to release the entire amount of MLA Vidhayak Kashaitar Nidhi but it is hard period and members should understand the compulsion and demand of time. The Government Vidhayak Prathmikta Scheme should have the name of MLAs the Government should consider this issue, Chief Minister said.
Chief Minister informed that decision was taken on April 7 ,2020 by the cabinet meeting to meet out the decline in the state receipts due to the covid pandemic.
”Legislators happened to be elected public representatives and they have their own responsibility and priorities. To ensure the local developments to such activities a MLA discriminatory fund has been constituted”Chief Minister said. ”If any MLA wanted to do any development work he would succeed if he had some thing in his own hands and this was the motive of constituting Vidhayak Kasaitar Vikas Nidhi. No one could understand the ground reality than MLAs where which amount and what needs to be built should be decided by the member of assembly. ”
Rs 25 lakh installments to be release next month
In the last Budget session this MLA discretionary grant was increased from Rs one crore to Rs 1.75 cr, however, no one was accessing this emergent situation of Covid -19. As the MP discretionary grants were stopped by the Union Government state Government suspended the release of this MLA discretionary grants,” Thakur said.
It was stopped by the state Government for a period of two years. The amounts are being released in installment to the members of assembly. Chief Minister said that number of developmental works started with the MLA discretionary grants have been delayed such works.Leader of Opposition Mr Mukesh Agnihotri said that MLA Vidhayak Kshetra Vikas Nidhi should be released in installments. When the Chief Minister was in opposition he was of the view that it should be increased. The first six months installments have completely missed the deadlines the rest six months entire money should be released in entire installments. MLAs’ priorities scheme should have name of chief minister, minister and MLA but it should not have name of officers. He urged the to strengthen MLA institution.