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B’la PRIs protest against freezing of 14th FC account before deadline

Urge Govt to revoke the order for ‘people’s welfare’

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Waris Fayaz

Baramulla, Jan 17 : The public representatives of Baramulla including the BDC chairperson, sarpanchs and panchs staged a protest demonstration against the recent government order of freezing the 14th FC account months before the deadline for utilization of funds.

They said the utilization of funds under the Fourteenth Finance Commission (FFC) was earlier ensured up to 31 March 2023, however, a recent order stated that the leftover funds are to be surrendered to the Central Account.

Talking to the news agency—Kashmir News Observer (KNO), the protesting PRIs termed it “totally against the people”. “How did the government issue such an order asking to surrender the amount to the central account as we have three months left for the utilization of funds,” they said.

“We had utilized 80% of funds till now. Rs 47 crores were to be utilized for sanitation, solar lights, transformers, etc”, they said.

They urged the government to revoke the order at the earliest “for the welfare of the people”.

An order copy in possession of KNO reads, “Sanction is hereby accorded to the freezing of funds for its further utilization out of accounts of Halqa Panchayats Block Offices & District Panchayat Offices excepting for ongoing Works under 14 Finance Commission Award with immediate effect. Consequent upon above, the available balance along with interest amount accrued thereupon lying in the bank accounts of Halqa Panchayats/ Block Officer & District Panchayat Offices be Immediately surrendered and transferred to the Central Account of 14h FCA viz, 0110040500000087, J&K Bank, Branch Moving Secretariat Jammu/ Srinagar.”

“Every Block Development Officer to ensure that Panchayat wise surrender statement, duly signed by concerned Panchayat Accounts Assistants and countersigned by Panchayat Secretaries is submitted to the office of Assistant Commissioner Panchayats (ACP) by 22nd January 2023”, it reads.

It directed the deputy commissioners to ensure time-bound compliance of the order and submit a certificate by January 31 so that no funds are left with panchayats on account of the 14th FC funds after the execution of the ongoing works and all remaining funds have been surrendered to the Central Account—(KNO)

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