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Labour Ministry yet to spend ₹2,053.59 crore of 2019-20 Budget, says Panel

Photo: Facebook/@LabourMinistry

Photo: Facebook/@LabourMinistry  

‘Utilisation percentage has been 70% and above in most schemes, while NCS recorded a low of 60.88%’

The Parliamentary Standing Committee on Labour in its March 13 report has flagged the under-utilisation of funds by the Union Labour and Employment Ministry, which was yet to spend almost 20% of its 2019-2020 Budget (revised estimate) as on February 10.

 

The Committee, which is chaired by Biju Janata Dal MP Bhartuhari Mahtab, wrote in its report on the demand for grants by the Ministry for 2020-2021 that it was concerned about the un-utilised funds. The report that was presented in both Houses of Parliament on March 13 said the Ministry had utilised 81.64% of the ₹11,184.09 crore allocated to its in the revised estimate.

‘Not evenly spread’

“The Committee are concerned to note that underutilised funds amounting to ₹2,053.59 crore still remain for the fiscal 2019-20. The Committee further find that for the current fiscal 2019-20, the utilisation of funds was not evenly spread out across all the four quarters which stood at ₹504.88 crore, ₹5,975.92 crore, ₹1,806.77 crore, ₹842.93 crore (upto 10.02.2020) respectively,” the report stated.

Also read|No unemployment data post-demonetisation: Labour Minister

The report noted that utilisation of funds for the National Career Services (NCS) scheme of the Ministry, which facilitates job-seekers, was the worst compared to other schemes. The Committee said the while the Pradhan Mantri Rojgar Protsahan Yojana, which gives employers incentives to generate new employment, recorded 100% utilisation compared with the revised estimate, in “most other Schemes, utilisation percentage has been to the extent of 70% and above while NCS recorded a low of 60.88%”.

Job fairs

While 3,751 job fairs had been conducted under the scheme till December 2019, “only 3.69 lakh” of the 19.71 lakh candidates had received job offers. The Ministry explained that it had introduced a feature on the NCS portal in March 2018 for employers to record the number of hirings, but this was not mandatory. Since 2018, employers had notified 2,115 hirings, the Ministry said.

When asked why the number of successful candidates had been so low, the Ministry told the committee that the job fairs were meant to bring employers and job-seekers together at a common platform.

“Employers join job fairs with certain type of jobs involving variety of skill sets specific to the industry concerned. However, due to wide publicity, job-seekers who may not be necessarily unemployed, along with job-seekers with or without required skill sets for jobs on offer also report to job fairs. Given this background, skewed pattern of job-seekers to that of jobs on offer by the employers is being perceived,” the Ministry replied.

Targets met

The committee added that it was satisfied with the fact that physical targets for the NCS and welfare of Scheduled Caste/Scheduled Tribe job-seekers through coaching etc. had been met for the last three years.

Also read | Labour Ministry keen to retain 8.65 % interest rate on EPF deposits for 2019-20

 

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Printable version | Jun 6, 2020 11:37:53 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/labour-ministry-yet-to-spend-205359-crore-of-2019-20-budget-says-panel/article31075892.ece

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