Angul: It is learnt that the Angul Municipality is working for the development of the civic area — without an action plan. The requisite action plan should have been prepared four months ago.
As a result, it has raised a fundamental question, ‘as to how the expenses that are being incurred by the civic body, towards repair, maintenance and other developmental works, will be met. In the absence of an adequate and approved action plan, the flow of funds has been pushed to uncertainties.
Reportedly, the validity period of Angul Municipality action plan, prepared for the fiscal 2018-19, ended in March last. A new action plan should have been prepared by the civic body, for the fiscal year 2019-20. It is known, the ‘Statement of Income and Expenditure’ for the purpose has not been prepared.
However, repair and maintenance of roads and drains is still under way in the civic area. According to norms envisaged in the Odisha Municipal Act, 1950, the ‘Statement of Income and Expenditure’ for the succeeding year should supposedly be prepared a month before the end of previous fiscal year.
Subsequently, the file is sent to Executive Officer, councillors and chairman of the municipality for their approval. In turn, it is also sent to the Housing and Urban Development Department for their final approval. Notably, under the final approval only funds can be utilised by the civic body for various purposes.
Worthy to note, in the action plan for the fiscal year 2018-19, a budgetary provision for Rs 5 crore 60 lakh was made by the civic authorities. Many developmental works, including urban electrification, were taken up out of the allocated funds.
In the current year, development of the municipal area has become a remote possibility, where even the basic sanitation and cleaning works are not being carried out. According to a senior officer of the Angul Municipality, “Nearly Rs 70 lakhs have been spent on various works so far, without the action plan for current year.”
Reacting to this, district Collector Manoj Kumar Mohanty said, “I will discuss with the municipal authorities regarding this, as to why the action plan has not been prepared yet. Accordingly, necessary steps will be taken in this regard”.