Express News Service

NEW DELHI:  The funds allocated to states under a scheme for modernisation of police forces have been reducing over the last two years, but the Centre contends that most of the states were unable to utilise ‘substantial’ portion of the allocations.

Union MoS for Home Affairs Nityanand Rai asserted that most of the state governments have substantial unspent balances out of the funds released during earlier years.

“For the States which utilise funds timely, the scheme (‘Assistance to States for Modernization of Police’) has unique mechanism to provide more funds based on their efficiency in timely utilisation of funds, in the form of ‘better performance incentives’ which are released out of pooled amount of the funds unreleased due to non-furnishing of Utilization Certificates by other States and ‘incentives for police reforms’ in selected reform areas for which up to 20% of allocated funds are kept aside,” he informed Parliament.

Only smaller states like Uttarakhand, Punjab, Kerala, and Mizoram have requested for more allocation, according to official records.

While Rs 607.25 cr was allocated to the states for modernisation of police forces in 2018-2019, the Centre brought the funds down to Rs 561 cr and Rs 521.10 cr in the subsequent two years.

analysis of the government data reveals that funds have dipped for all states in the country.

The funds allocated to Uttar Pradesh, the most populated state in the country, came down from Rs 68.39 in 2018-2019 to Rs 63.19 cr in 2019-2020 and 2020-2021.

Maharashtra’s share dropped from Rs 51 cr in 2018-2019 to Rs 47.11 cr in the last two years.

While the third highest allocation was allocated to Jammu and Kashmir, the scheme was stopped last year as it became a Union Territory.

It had got Rs 39.9 cr and Rs 43.19 crore in 2019-2020 and 2018-2019. Similarly, Karnataka received Rs 38.37 cr in the last two financial years as compared to Rs 41.53 cr in 2018-2019.

The central funds are used for acquisition of advanced weapons; intelligence equipment including UAVs, night vision devices (NVDs), CCTV Surveillance system; modern communication equipment and state-of-the art equipment.