Hakim directs councillors to deposit amount contributed by 'Banglar Bari' beneficiaries to their bank accounts
Kolkata: State Municipal Affairs minister Firhad Hakim has instructed all councillors in the state to deposit the amount contributed by the beneficiaries under Banglar Bari scheme immediately to their bank accounts.
Keeping this amount in the councillor's own hands often creates confusion in the mind of the beneficiaries and they believe that the former has taken the money for his/her own benefit.
"There have been cases when councillors took the initiative in constructing house for the poor under this scheme and kept some of the money in their hands. This is because there have been instances when the beneficiary, after getting the first installment of the Centre or state's share, spent the money for other purposes," Hakim said. "However, until the utilisation certificate (UC) for the first installment is furnished, the second installment gets stopped automatically. This creates confusion in the mind of the beneficiary that the councillor is taking the money (which is misconstrued as cut money) and is depriving him/her. Councillors from now on will deposit the beneficiary's amount of Rs 25,000 in the
latter's bank account, to avoid any sort of confusion," he added.
According to Hakim, councillors should keep no money under the scheme in their own hands and deposit it in the beneficiary's bank account, leaving it upon the beneficiary to decide how he/she should go forward with constructing the house.
The total amount for the scheme usually comes in three phases- 30 percent in the first, 30 percent in second and 40 percent in the third installment.
Under the Banglar Bari (House for All) scheme, the total cost for construction of a house is Rs 3,68,578, out of which Rs 1,50,000 is given by the central government, Rs 1,93,571 by the state government and Rs 25,000 by the beneficiary. Another Rs 36,000 is also spent by the state for infrastructure development like drainage line, roads, water supply etc.
The beneficiary amount is Rs 25,000 for those municipal areas where the population is 5 lakh or less. In areas where the population is over 5 lakh, the beneficiary's amount is Rs 35,000.
It may be mentioned that after Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee's announcement regarding crackdown on cut money, there has been confusion among people that the councillors are depriving the beneficiaries of their contributions under the scheme. Chairmen of a number of municipalities have raised the issue with Hakim.