Punjab Govt. Failed to Utilize Funds Allocated for ‘Beti Bachao’ Scheme

The State Government of Punjab government has failed to use the funds sanctioned under the ambitious scheme of Central Government ‘Beti Bachao-Beti Padhao’ for the girl child during the last two years despite the adverse sex ratio in the state.

According to Comptroller and Auditor General which also found that Sex Ratio at Birth (SRB) had further declined in 2016 in at least four of the districts, out of Rs 6.36 crore sanctioned by the Centre to the state government during 2014-16, only Rs 91 lakh were used up to March 2016.

On Wednesday, the report taled in the assembly states that infrequent state task force meetings adversely affected the implementation of the scheme in 11 districts while the scheme could not be started in nine districts.

Centre had launched the BBBP scheme in January 2015 with 100 per cent central funding to address the issue of decline in Child Sex Ratio (CSR) in 100 gender critical districts of India.

The report stated that however the State Task Force (STF) was constituted as per notification issued in September 2015 for monitoring the activities of BBBP, no quarterly meetings of STF were conducted for convergence and coordination between concerned departments as required under the guidelines.
It also said that initially, 11 districts of Punjab were included in April 2015 under the scheme.Subsequently, nine other districts were added by the central government.

Punjab government implemented this scheme through its Department of Social Security and Women and Child Development (DSSWCD) and district administration in convergence with Departments of Health, Education and Panchayati Raj.

The Union Ministry of Women and Child Development had invited the attention in March 2016 of the state to one of the targets of the scheme–improvement in SRB. It indicated that there was decrease in SRB in six districts of Punjab during 2015 in comparison to the baseline values of SRB in the year 2014.

Punjab has a skewed sex ratio of 895 girls for every 1,000 boys. Rport stated that audit also noticed that in four of these districts, theSRB was not only declining but was also less than overall SRB of State–892 as in March 2016. Barnala’s SRB in 2014 was 836, but it dropped to 821 in 2015. Likewise, Ferozepur’s SRB was 871 in 2015 as against 895 in 2014.

Gurdaspur’s SRB was 851 in 2015 as against 889 in 2014 while Sangrur’s SRB dropped to 832 in 2015 from 863 the previous year. Mohali (SAS Nagar), too, reported a fall in SRB, which came down from 956 in 2014 to 923 in 2015. The state has 22 districts.

News Source: http://www.news18.com/news/india/punjab-govt-failed-to-utilise-funds-for-beti-bachao-scheme-cag-1366111.html

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