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Goa to be struck off tourism kitty again?


PANJIM
Goa  had  not  received a single  paisa from the Union Ministry  for Tourism during 2012 for non-utilisation of sanctioned project funds and this may well be the fate  in 2013 as well. Ironically, given the financial squeeze post the mining ban, the state has only itself to blame for this sorry state of affairs.

Documents accessed by Herald show that the simple reason for non release of funds by the Centre is that between  2009 and  2011 (when the Congress government was in power) the state has furnished utilization certificates for only Rs 23  crore, of the  Rs 39  crore allotted, for  centrally-sponsored tourism  projects in the  state. An amount of  Rs 16 crore is still to be utilized and top officials in the Union Tourism Ministry  say  that  unless  Goa  utilizes  the  funds  and submits utilization certificates for the same, the Centre is not inclined to allot any funds to  Goa.

“In fact, this amount  of  Rs 16  crore  is   due  for  surrender,” an official in the Goa Tourism Department admitted, adding  that the Goa  government has lobbied  very  hard  with  central  officials  to permit  additional time  to the  state to  utilize  the money and furnish  utilization certificates  accordingly. In a representation by the  Goa Tourism Minister Dilip Parulekar to the Centre, he writes: “I request   the (central) ministry  to  grant  us  six  to eight months time for utilizing  the  amount  sanctioned and to furnish the utilization certificates.”

Full report here Herald

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