KOCHI: The Kochi Corporation which topped in Plan Funds spending in the state during last fiscal year has made a nosedive this year. As per the local self-government department’s (LSGD) performance analysis as on January 27, Kochi is in the last position with only 11.60 percent utilisation while Kollam tops with 23.19 percent. During the last fiscal, the civic body spent 71.88 percent of the total allocation of Rs 146.51 crore, the highest Plan fund utilisation by any civic body in the state. As per the LSGD analysis, Kozhikode is the second, and Thiruvananthapuram has the third positions. Among municipalities, Haripad is on top spending 49.7 percent while Thalassery is at the bottom with only 6.4 per cent.
Similar is the situation of Ernakulam district panchayat which is the poorest performer with 4.7 percent while Malappuram is the number one by spending 20 percent of the allocated funds. Idukki and Kottayam are the last in utilising allocated funds. Ernakulam is in the 12th position. The Kochi Corporation has more than 650 works that are being carried out using Plan funds. Since the current fiscal is the last year of 12th Five Year Plan, there is a rare chance for getting the unused funds carry forward to the next fiscal. Most probably, the funds would get lapsed as only two months left.
“This year, there has been an inordinate delay in planning and implementing projects. The frequent changes in specifications brought by the government are one of the reasons for the delay which is further worsened by the apathetic attitude of civic authorities,” said a corporation contractor. Meanwhile, an official said the council had recently given the nod for implementation of RAY (Rajiv Gandhi Awas Yojana) project, and with its implementation, the expenditure will be around 60 to 70 percent. “If the current progress is any indication, a major portion of the Plan funds would lapse,” said V.P. Chandran, a CPM councillor.