Every year our MPs are entitled to get 5 crores to be spent in their own constituencies. But then where does this money go? What are the guidelines on where the money could be spent? What are the checks and balances that are in place? All these questions were answered in a CAG audit report conducted a few years ago. A report on the same can be accessed here: https://factly.in/misusing-the-mplad-funds-since-1993-analysis-on-mplads-fund-utilization/
The report highlighted many issues ranging from underutilization of the funds to exploitation to misreporting and mismanagement. Of course, this audit report only caught these issues after the fact, many years later. By which point either the MPs were no longer MPs of those constituencies or even if they still are, the public officials who executed or didn’t execute those works are no longer holding those offices.
But thanks to audit reports like this, at least the MPLADs website is updated with the latest (as latest as it can get) information on the MPLADs (http://126.96.36.199/MPLADS/UploadedFiles/HTML/16ls/lsstat33.htm). While this is still far from what we need, this is at least a good starting point. Take for example, Telangana.
Out of the total money available to spend in all the MP constituencies only 54.61% has been spent.
If you look at the individual MP constituencies, Warangal is the worst with just 24.18% and Medak as the best with 87.83% of utilization of funds.
- What we now need is transparency into
- Where these funds were used?
- What kind of activities were supported?
- What kind of monitoring is being done?
- What checks and balances are in place to prevent further misuse?
How do we get access to the data?
There are many indirect ways to access the data.
- The first of course is to file RTI with the corresponding MP constituencies
- Ask the MP (or his/her secretaries) directly for this information
- The district level officers in charge of executing this work
This is by far the closest we can come to monitor our MPs @ work. Question is whether we are willing to take that extra step, go that extra mile, spend that extra hour to do so or willing to wait for yet another CAG report.