Why in news?
Ministry of Statistics and Programme Implementation (MoSPI) issued a circular granting one-time dispensation for utilizing funds under the Members of Parliament Local Area Development Scheme (MPLADS) to address the challenges in the fight against COVID-19.
As per the amendments to MPLADS Guidelines, Members of Parliament can now utilize funds under MPLADS for the following:-
- Infra-Red thermometers (Non-contact) to enable doctors and medical personnel to record and track a person’s temperature.
- Personal Protection Equipment (PPE) Kits to keep the medical personnel well-protected and enable them to function efficiently by minimizing the risk of transmission.
- Thermal imaging scanners or cameras for railway stations, airports and other points of entry which allow detecting of temperature from a safe distance.
- CORONA testing kits approved by M/o Health and Family Welfare
- ICU Ventilator and Isolation/ Quarantine Wards within their approved facilities.
- Face masks, gloves and Sanitizers for medical personnel.
- Any other medical equipment recommended by Ministry of Health and Family Welfare for prevention, control and treatment of COVID-19.
Members of Parliament Local Area Development Scheme
MPLADS is an ongoing Central Sector Scheme which was launched in 1993-94. The Scheme enables the Members of Parliament to recommend works for creation of durable community assets based on locally felt needs to be taken up in their constituencies in the area of national priorities namely drinking water, education, public health, sanitation, roads etc.
The Ministry of Statistics and Programme Implementation has been responsible for the policy formulation, release of funds and prescribing monitoring mechanism for implementation of the Scheme.
- The annual MPLADS fund entitlement per MP constituency is Rs. 5 crore.
- MPs are to recommend every year, works costing at least 15 per cent of the MPLADS entitlement for the year for areas inhabited by Scheduled Caste population and 7.5 per cent for areas inhabited by S.T. population.
- In order to encourage trusts and societies for the betterment of tribal people, a ceiling of Rs. 75 lakh is stipulated for building assets by trusts and societies subject to conditions prescribed in the scheme guidelines.
- Lok Sabha Members can recommend works within their Constituencies and Elected Members of Rajya Sabha can recommend works within the State of Election (with select exceptions).
- Nominated Members of both the Rajya Sabha and Lok Sabha can recommend works anywhere in the country.
- All works to meet locally felt infrastructure and development needs, with an emphasis on creation of durable assets in the constituency are permissible under MPLADS as prescribed in the scheme guidelines.
- Expenditure on specified items of non durable nature are also permitted as listed in the guidelines.
Release of Funds:
- Funds are released in the form of grants in-aid directly to the district authorities.
- The funds released under the scheme are non-lapsable.
- The liability of funds not released in a particular year is carried forward to the subsequent years, subject to eligibility.
Execution of works:
The MPs have a recommendatory role under the scheme. They recommend their choice of works to the concerned district authorities who implement these works by following the established procedures of the concerned state government.
The district authority is empowered to examine the eligibility of works sanction funds and select the implementing agencies, prioritise works, supervise overall execution, and monitor the scheme at the ground level.