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Proper minority funds use claim

Patna, Dec. 17: The state minority welfare department today claimed to have utilised around 75 per cent of the multi-sector development programme (MSDP) funds meant for seven Muslim-dominated districts.

The deputy secretary of the department, Rasheed Ahmad, stressed that no MSDP funds was ever returned to the Centre or lapsed.

After The Telegraph published the report “House panel reveals tardy use of minority funds” in its December 17, 2013 edition, Ahmad claimed that the Assembly’s estimate committee had evaluated the status of MSDP in 2011-12. The utilisation of funds looked unimpressive at that stage because many schemes under the programme were in the initial stage of execution, he added.

“Today’s status of MSDP in Bihar reflects speedy execution of the selected schemes and impressive utilisation of the central and the state funds. During the Eleventh Five-Year Plan, Bihar received around Rs 409 crore from the Centre under MSDP. Around Rs 301 crore of it, which comes to around 75 per cent of the Centre’s contribution to the scheme, has been utilised. The selected schemes are being speedily executed,” Ahmad said.

He said proposals under the Twelfth Five Year Plan were sent to the Union ministry of minority affairs in November 2012 and over Rs 51 crore has been released as the first instalment of the central share.

The estimate committee report tabled in the Assembly on December 10 quoted figures of expenditure for four financial years of the Eleventh Five-Year Plan period from 2007 to 2011.