VIJAYAWADA: The Comptroller and Auditor General (CAG) report tabled in the Andhra Pradesh Legislative Assembly on Friday revealed that the State government lapsed unspent amount of Rs 26,380 crore in 2021-22 to the Consolidated Fund of the State, which resulted in a reduction of revenue and fiscal deficit, compared to the previous year.
The State government, while lapsing the unspent balance, had also lapsed the Finance Commission recommended health sector grants (Rs 488.15 crore) given by the Centre.
The action of the government lapsing the funds was in violation of the Centre’s guidelines and also resulted in an understatement of revenue expenditure and revenue deficit while creating an interest burden (Rs 11.33 crore for not transferring the funds) to the Consolidated Fund of the State, the CAG report observed.
As against the Centre’s guidelines to transfer pass-through grants given for implementation of various Centrally sponsored schemes to the Single Nodal Account pertaining to those schemes, the government had lapsed the unutilised funds of Rs 6,356 crore to the Consolidated Fund of the State as a reduction of expenditure.
The report stated that the share of capital expenditure (9.21% of total expenditure) was lower in the State compared to the General States average (14.41% of total expenditure) affecting the physical capital formation with a cascading impact on economic growth in the long run.
The funds provided to the State Disaster Response Fund (SDRF) were being kept idle from 2019-20 by transferring to the personal deposit account illegally without being spent for drought relief as per sanctions was in violation of the SDRF guidelines.
As per the CAG report, the government regularly resorted to lapsing of pass-through grants provided by the Centre towards the implementation of various Centrally sponsored schemes to the revenue account despite being pointed out by audits regularly. In 2021-22, Rs 6,356.01 crore was lapsed instead of transferring the funds to the Single Nodal Account.
In turn, the government stated that most of the lapsed funds pertaining to the Centrally sponsored schemes, which are required to be transferred, were already transferred to the SNA after reconciliation.
The CAG pointed out that the government did not release Rs 3,540.91 crore pertaining to the matching State share in 2021-22, which results in the tardy implementation of schemes.
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