Rs 135 Cr of MPLAD fund remained unspent in 33 Dalit/Muslim Lok Sabha constituencies held by BJP.
(Indian Parliament (Photo – www.huffingtonpost.in)
Lucknow, Feb 10: Prime Minister Narendra Modi and his party BJP won the 2014 Lok Sabha elections on the plank of development – the party won 71 out of 80 Lok Sabha seats in Uttar Pradesh alone – and they want people of India’s most populated state to vote them in the ongoing Assembly elections also for development.
“We are willing to do everything for the growth of UP. To change the fortunes of Uttar Pradesh, change the government in the state,” asked Prime Minister Narendra Modi while addressing an election rally in Meerut.”
But a study of the performance of Members of the 16th Lok Sabha from UP says that a whopping Rs 333.6 crores of MPLAD funds remain unspent in the state – Rs 135 crores of these funds not spent in 33 Lok Sabha constituencies where either Dalits or Muslims are in sizeable number.
Every year, an MP is given Rs 5 crore for development works in his constituency.
As per the study conducted by a US-based news portal TwoCircles.net, in collaboration with Indian-Americans’ advocacy group IAMC, there are a whopping 333.6 crores of MPLAD funds that remain unspent. While 71 crores of these funds remained unspent in 17 Dalit-dominated constituencies, more than Rs 64 crore could not be spent in 16 other constituencies where Muslims account for over 20% of the population. All these 33 seats are represented by BJP.
The fund utilization percentage for 17 Dalit-dominated constituencies remained at 58.91% while that for Muslim-dominated constituencies was 67.76%.
President Pranab Mukherjee and Vice President Mohd. Hamid Ansari with Prime Minister Narendra Modi and other members of Council of Ministers after the Swearing-in Ceremony at Rashtrapati Bhavan, in New Delhi on May 26, 2014.
“Average of the percent utilized for MPLAD funds drops for “Dalit seats” to 58.9% while it goes up significantly for “Muslim seats” to 67.8% while the average of all seats is 60.8%,” says the report.
However, if one goes to individual performance as for utilization of MPLAd funds, two MPs of BJP have performed best while one from BJP and another from Samajwadi Party are the worst performers.
Best & Worst Performance
BJP MP Satish Kumar of Aligarh has utilized 86% of his 15 crores. Maneka Gandhi, also from BJP, comes close second with 85.9% of utilization.
BJP MP Kanwar Pushpendra Singh Chanel of Hamirpur has utilized only 17% of his funds and Kannauj’s Dimple Yadav of Samajwadi Party, with 24% of funds utilization, is second from the bottom.
Performance on the floor of House
The study has also analysed the performance of MPs on the floor of the Parliament.
Average of debate participation by MPs drops from 54 for all to 44 for Muslim-dominated seats and to only 29 for Dalit-dominated seats.
Average number of questions by all MPs is 99, for “Muslim seats” 98, and drops significantly for Dalit MPs with just 85 questions. Three Dalit MPs have zero questions asked; another Dalit MP has so far asked just one question in the last 2.5 years, says the report.