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Dispur rubbishes Sonowal statement

Sentinel Digital DeskBy : Sentinel Digital Desk

  |  9 Sep 2015 12:00 AM GMT

By our Staff Reporter

GUWAHATI, Sept 8: The Assam Government has rubbished Union Minister of State (independent charge) for Sports and Youth Welfare Sarbanda Sonowal’s statement that Dispur still has Rs 1,400 crore meant for flood relief and rescue operation with it.

Talking to newsmen in the city yesterday Sonowal was on record saying: “Dispur saying that it lack funds for relief and rescue operation for the flood-affected people in the State is a blatant lie. Still now Rs 1,400 crore has been lying unused with Dispur in its SDRF Fund. What prevents Dispur from distributing the funds among the flood-affected people? If the amount is not enough to compensate the affected people, the Centre is ready to release funds, subject to request from Dispur. Flood can never be a political issue. Such problems should be solved with a humanitarian approach. However, instead of following that course, Dispur is out to politicize the issue.”

Reacting to the statement, Dispur today said: “It is clarified that the total fund earmarked by the 14th Fince Commission for the State Disaster Response Fund (SDRF) for the year 2015-16 is Rs 460 crore, out of which the share of Central Government is Rs 414 crore and the that of the State Government is Rs 46 crore. Therefore, the question of Central Government releasing of Rs 1655 crore for the relief and rescue operation does not arise. It may also be noted that the closing balance of SDRF as on 31st March, 2015 is Rs 80.73 crore and the Central Government has released the first installment, being 50% of its share amounting to Rs 207 crore till date. The available fund during the current year is Rs 333.73 crore, including State share of Rs 46 crore. The expenditure till date is Rs 104.92 crore.” There is some difference in figures of opening balance as on April 1, 2015 between the accounts maintained by the State Government and the figures as per the records of Accountant General, Assam, Dispur said, adding: “The same is being reconciled with Accountant General, Assam.”

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