Amid fund crunch, Ludhiana MC approves projects worth ₹100 cr sans clarity on finances - Hindustan Times
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Amid fund crunch, Ludhiana MC approves projects worth 100 cr sans clarity on finances

By, Ludhiana
Sep 08, 2022 04:22 AM IST

Ludhiana MC approved around 250 resolutions of the total 277 tabled in the finance panel’s meet despite acute shortages of funds

With municipal elections expected to be held by the end of the year, the civic body’s finance and contracts committee (F&CC) on Wednesday approved around 250 resolutions regarding the development works worth around 100 crore during a meeting held at mayor camp office.

Mayor Balkar Singh Sandhu with others during the meeting of Ludhiana MC’s Finance and Contracts Committee. (Harvinder Singh/H)
Mayor Balkar Singh Sandhu with others during the meeting of Ludhiana MC’s Finance and Contracts Committee. (Harvinder Singh/H)

The same comes at a time when the municipal corporation (MC) is battling a fund crunch, even struggling to pay salaries to its employees. In the wake of the same, there is an apparent lack of clear planning for funding these projects.

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As per the information, 277 resolutions were tabled during the meeting, which continued for over four and a half hours. Of these, around 250 were approved — including projects funded under Smart City Mission and National Clean Air Program (NCAP) by the committee headed by mayor Balkar Sandhu. A majority of the works were related to construction of roads, installation of new tubewells and sewer lines.

Councillors have been mounting pressure on the mayor to approve projects for their respective wards, faced with the upcoming elections — which was also why the key finance meet was organised on Wednesday.

Sandhu, however, said the projects have been approved considering the already fixed quota for every councillor. Earlier, the finance committee had fixed 1 crore for inner wards and 1.5 crore for outer wards annually.

“The projects which have to be taken up on priority basis have been approved like installation of tubewells. As the MC has been facing shortage of funds, the other projects have been approved considering the fixed quota of councillors. If the councillor had already got projects approved equal to his quota, then the additional projects have been kept pending for now, the mayor said.

Sandhy added that the civic body is facing fund shortage due to the state government’s failure in releasing its share of goods and services tax (GST), which amounts to nearly 100 crore.

The MC has already availed a 100 crore loan to carry out development works and if required, the funds will be used to take up the projects.

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