Despite Madhya Pradesh Chief Minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan’s thrust on better utilisation of funds, several government departments in the state were unable to utilise less than half of the money meant for them for development till December during the current financial year and have offered to surrender funds allotted to them.

“Many departments of Madhya Pradesh government including agriculture, rural development, urban administration and Narmada Valley Development Authority (NVDA) have failed to spend funds allotted to them in 2008-09 and offered to surrender about Rs. 700 crore due to their inability to utilise it,” official sources said here on Friday.

Agriculture department proposes to surrender a sum of Rs. 175.27 crore while NVDA has decided to return Rs. 155.42 crore and Rural Development Department plans to surrender an amount of Rs. 142.70 crore out of the money allotted to them by the state government, they said.

Similarly, Urban Administration Department has offered to surrender Rs. 197.55 crore and Social Justice Department will return Rs. 18.38 crore as they were unable to utilise the funds meant for them, sources said.

In the recent review of utilisation of budget of various departments in the state, the Planning Department found that several important departments failed to use funds allotted to them within the designated time frame, they said.