Financial year 2009-10 saw poor utilisation of just 40.44% of sum allocated

Even though modernisation of police has been a priority for the State government in the last decade, a part of the funds allocated by the Centre and the State under the Modernisation of Police Force (MPF) scheme remained unutilised, especially in the year 2009-10, an audit report has revealed.

As of March 31, 2010, Rs.191.56 crore was unutilised out of the total Rs.1024.49 crore allotted to the MPF since the scheme was revamped in 2001.

Financial year 2009-10 saw poor utilisation of just 40.44 per cent of the sum allocated, the government auditor stated in the report tabled in the Assembly on Wednesday. As against Rs. 80.89 crore earmarked the MPF that year, only Rs. 38.28 crore was spent, leaving Rs. 42.61 crore unutilised.

In its explanation, the government said that in September 2010 the utilisation of MPF funds was cent per cent up to 2007-08, and 94.92 per cent and 40.44 per cent for the next two years.

The balance amount would be utilised for implementation of the scheme.

The CAG did not accept the explanation, saying at the end of 2007-08, the unutilised funds with the government amounted to Rs.145.74 crore.

The audit report found that only 2,612 quarters were constructed for police personnel under MPF during 2005-2010, though 3,631 were to be built. It noted that the total number of police quarters available for police personnel at the end of March 2010 was 48,183, while police strength stood at 1.04 lakh in January that year.

“Housing satisfaction as on March 31, 2010 was only 46.40 per cent for the police personnel as against 59.35 per cent proposed in the Perspective Plan for 2006-11.”

The CAG also made observations about the purchase of vehicles under MPF to enhance the mobility of police. Despite purchase of 2,334 vehicles between 2006-10, the net availability of vehicles with the department came down from 10,247 in 2006 to 9,067 in 2010. This indicated that the number of vehicles condemned outnumbered new procurements, “thus defeating the objective of increasing the mobility of the police force.”

The Police Department's policy note for 2011-12 said the number of vehicles now stood at 13,516.