Tamil Nadu

Tamil Nadu for common-pooling ₹1 crore each from MLA funds to combat COVID-19

Tamil Nadu Chief Minister Edappadi K. Palaniswami. File.

Tamil Nadu Chief Minister Edappadi K. Palaniswami. File.   | Photo Credit: B. Jothi Ramalingam

In a statement issued on Tuesday, the Chief Minister said ₹1 crore from each MLACDS fund, was to be integrated and used for expenses incurred in the fight against COVID-19

A day after the Centre promulgated an ordinance suspending MPLADS funds for two years, Tamil Nadu Chief Minister Edappadi K. Palaniswami on Tuesday said he has directed common-pooling of ₹1 crore each from the MLA Constituency Development Scheme (MLACDS) funds of all legislators, towards precautionary and relief measures being taken against COVID-19.

In a statement issued on Tuesday, Mr. Palaniswami said ₹1 crore from each MLACDS fund was to be integrated and used for expenses incurred in the fight against COVID-19.

Mr. Palaniswami’s statement came shortly after DMK president and Leader of the Opposition M.K. Stalin’s tweet alleging that funds allotted by DMK MLA V. Senthil Balaji was being turned down by the district administration authorities. The CM said the funds were to be integrated in the district-level and State-level and spent towards the fight against COVID-19.

Speaking to The Hindu, a DMK MLA said: “When the entire State is facing the threat of novel coronavirus how could the government take away the already paltry funds allotted to us? Instead, the government should have said that much of the funds should be spent on COVID-19-related expenses within our respective constituencies."

The legislator also recalled an incident last week, when his request for using his MLACDS funds for disinfectants and personal protective equipment for conservancy workers in his constituency was turned down by the District Collector for lack of specific norms.

 

“Instead of issuing an announcement to make it mandatory for using funds for COVID-19, this announcement of the CM, shows how he is mismanaging and how his plan is flawed and how this government is blindly following Prime Minister Narendra Modi without a clear plan,” the MLA elected from one of the northern districts contended.

Each of the MLAs is allotted funds to the tune of ₹3 crore as MLACDS. According to the guidelines issued in June last year for the implementation of MLACDS, the funds were to be spent under tied components and untied components. Funds of about ₹1.5 crore in the tied components were to be spent for infrastructure, anganwadis, kitchens in schools and drinking water supply among others.

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Printable version | Jul 8, 2020 8:59:22 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/tamil-nadu/tamil-nadu-for-common-pooling-1-crore-each-from-mla-funds-to-combat-covid-19/article31278946.ece

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