Asif Showkat Kallol: The Finance Ministry has been rejected a proposal presented with a view to build 68,000 residents involving at Tk 2067 crore for the poor and poorest people across the country centering the upcoming Mujib’s centenary.
The dream of poor and poorest people to get a home may be destroyed in the beginning, if the proposed project is not implemented, experts said.
The Ministry of Disaster Management and Relief in a letter proposed to build those houses by transferring its funds from the Vulnerable Group Feeding (VGF) program, special grants and unused funds of the unapproved projects.
The Mujib Year will begin on March 17, the birth centenary of the founding father of Bangladesh Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman. It will end on March 17 next year. The Disaster Management and Relief affairs Ministry wants to build those houses during the time which will coincide two fiscal years – the current, 2019-2020 and the next 2020-2021.
The government has taken elaborate programs to celebrate the year. Different ministries have taken programs to touch the life of people.
Deputy Secretary of the Finance Division Md Touhidul Islam on Thursday sent the letter to Senior Secretary of the Disaster Management Ministry Dr Shah Kamal informing their inability to give permission.
But the officials of the Disaster Management Ministry said they will go ahead with their plan along with their own budget.
Finance Minister AHM Mustafa Kamal, however, told ‘The Daily Industry’ that he had no knowledge about the proposal or its rejection.
The letter, a copy of which is with ‘The Daily Industry’ showed that the finance division explained in seven points of why cannot allow the disaster management ministry transfer the funds.
Funds diversion from a programme to another requires approval of the finance division.
They proposed to build those in two phases – 30,000 in the current fiscal and the rest in the next fiscal. The total cost of the project was estimated at Tk 2067 crore along with a two years completion deadline.
They have decided to transfer Tk 800 crore from the revised budget of the current fiscal 2019-20. And the money will be taken from the VGF allocation.
The finance division argued that the VGF program is to ensure the food security of the poor and the poorest people of the county. The program will be disrupted, leaving the poor at risk, if the funds are cut.
Funds cut from any program of the Ministry of Disaster Management and Relief can also lead to complexity in emergency situation, the finance division explained.