No misuse of SC/ST Sub Plan funds for honorarium scheme: Tamil Nadu
This fund can be spent only on SC/ST. The Centre and other states are following this method of allocation for all schemes.
CHENNAI: While denying the allegation that `1,540 crore has been diverted from the Scheduled Caste Sub Plan (SCSP) to implement the Kalaignar Mahalir Urimai Thogai Thittam, Adi Dravida Welfare Secretary G Laxmi Priya on Monday said the issue arose owing to a misunderstanding on how funds are allocated under the sub-plan.
In a statement, Priya said that the objective of SCSP is to ensure that all schemes being implemented by the government benefit SC/ST members. When implementing general schemes, a separate allocation is made for SC/ST and this can only be spent on them.
“There are schemes which benefit only SC/ST and there are certain general schemes under which SC/ST also benefit. As per the methodology, under the overall allocation for a general scheme, the funds for SC/ST are allocated under a separate head. This fund can be spent only on SC/ST. The Centre and other states are following this method of allocation for all schemes.
For example, the Centre is allocating funds for MGNREGA, Indira Gandhi National Old Age Pension, Pradhan Mantri Awas Yojana (Urban), and Sarva Shiksha Abhiyan, Swachh Bharat Mission (Rural) under this methodology,” Priya said.
She also pointed out that the state government is following a similar methodology for allocating funds for various schemes including Moovalur Ramamirtham Pudhumai Penn Thittam, Dr Muthulakshmi Reddy maternity benefit scheme, free dhoti-saree scheme and free uniform distribution scheme for students.
On the same line, out of Rs 7,000 crore allocated for Kalaignar Magalir Urimai Thogai Thittam, `1,540 crore has been allocated for SC/ST.
The Adi Dravida Welfare secretary pointed out that consultations are on with all stakeholders about enacting special legislation for proper implementation of SCSP. Besides, a special section has been created in the Finance Department to monitor SCSP funds. The National Commission for Scheduled Castes had issued a notice to the state seeking an explanation within 15 days about a complaint received that SCSP funds were diverted.