The Special Task Force, set up by the DMK government, has tracked a sum of Rs 1,946.31 crore. This can be immediately remitted back to the government account, said state Finance Minister PTR.

Tamil Nadu Finance Minister Palanivel Thiaga Rajan addresses a press conference in Chennai. He is wearing a white shirt.
news Finance Monday, November 01, 2021 - 20:39

A Special Task Force (STF) set up by the Tamil Nadu government found that an unspent amount of nearly Rs 2,000 crore was kept outside the Treasury. The sum of Rs 1,946.31 crore can be remitted back to the government account, State Finance Minister Palanivel Thiaga Rajan (PTR) said on Monday, November 1. 

The Special Task Force was constituted to reconcile, identify and access the funds of the government departments, government-run societies, statutory institutions and local bodies kept outside the Treasury, within a particular timeframe. It team was set up in line with a budgetary announcement made earlier this year by the state Finance Minister.

"The monies that have been shown as spent in the accounts of the state are actually in some other accounts… this has been mentioned in the past CAG (Comptroller and Auditor General of India) reports as well. Whether they are spent or not, we posted a special team (to find that out)," he told reporters in Chennai.

"Multiple data points indicate that government funds are often shifted to accounts outside the view of the Treasury system. Upon assuming office, this (DMK) government initiated a dual-track survey to identify such funds through government department and agencies and by banks holding such accounts. The initial assessment reveals substantial unutilised funds," he further said in a statement.

The details of bank accounts wherein the government money were parked as on March 31, 2021 were collected from multiple sources like banks, district collectors, government departments and other quasi-governmental entities. Further, it conducted several meetings with government departments and state-level Bankers Committee in order to build a reliable database for the purpose, he said.

"The Special Task Force has collected and collated information broadly under the categories of 'Available balances', 'Liabilities' and 'to be remitted into Government account', separately under each of the closed schemes, ongoing Schemes and receipts of the department.

"By this process, from the data so far collected, the Special Task Force has tracked a sum of Rs 1,946.31 crore that can be immediately remitted back to the government account," he said.

Further, it is important to put in place a mechanism to prevent the recurrence of such instances of idle non-utilisation of funds in the future.

Towards this end, the direct disbursal of funds from the government treasury to the ultimate beneficiaries pensioners, government servants receiving salaries, old age pensioners, recipients of scholarships and of final payments for works and supply of goods and services through the Integrated Financial and Human Resources Management System (IFHRMS) will ensure that there is no idling of funds of a substantial portion of the budget, he added.

Watch: Minister PTR’s press conference

 
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