PATIALA, JULY 6 (wishavwarta):-

Terming it as highly regretful and problematic, the Patiala MP Preneet Kaur has demanded that PM Modi should clarify the decision to arbitrarily scarp MPLAD funds meant for public welfare of masses.

In a statement issued here, the Congress MP stated the time tested Member Parliament Local Area Development Funds Programme initiated by Congress in 1993 had been instrumental in forging public infrastructure based on local felt needs in a particular constituency.

These allocations had inbuilt accountability as they were approved by elected representatives and suspending these funds have greatly impacted the pace of community development works, Preneet Kaur said underlining the haste and arbitratiness of the centre decision. These decisions should have been taken after consultation with all parties, she lamented.

Moreover nobody sitting in Delhi can decide what is urgently required in a remote village in Punjab, Preneet Kaur further said pointing out targetted micro intervention at district, city or block level is prerogative of representatives which in turn is the very essence of our elected democracy.

Centre must come clean on its plans to spend these funds which were of vital public importance to masses. Taking a dig at BJP regime, Preneet Kaur said we are yet to receive anything from much publicised Rs. 20 Lakh Crore ‘package’ which PM Modi had announced with much fanfare. Leave alone Rs 20 Lakh Crores, we are yet to receive our due share of GST refund, Preneet quipped.

Underlining grave financial impact of Corona lockdown, Preneet Kaur suggested that centre must utilise these funds for creating employment opportunities constituency-wise for those unemployed and hit hard during Covid.

This is not only crippling financial autonomy of states but it is also a serious attack on our cherished federal structure enshrined in our constitution, she added.

Started in 1993, MPs were entitled to recommend works to the tune of Rs 1 crore annually between 1994-95 and 1997-98 under MPLAD scheme, after which the annual entitlement was enhanced to Rs 2 crore. The UPA government in 2011-12 raised the annual entitlement to Rs 5 crore per MP.