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No increase in MPLADS funds

By Our Special Correspondent

NEW DELHI, DEC. 10. Despite persistent demands from Members of Parliament cutting across party lines, the Government has ruled out any increase in the quantum of funds for the Members of Parliament Local Area Development Scheme (MPLADS). At present the members are given Rs. 2 crores annually which they could direct for development works in their constituencies. The Rajya Sabha members are authorised to use the funds for development in any part of the State that they represent.

Ruling out any increase, the Minister for Statistics and Programme Implementation, Oscar Fernandes, told the members from Andhra Pradesh, Assam, West Bengal, Maharashtra, Karnataka, Goa, the north-eastern States and Union Territories, except Delhi, that stricter norms were on the way to ensure effective implementation of the works taken up under the scheme. Guidelines for the MPLADS were under revision to make them more strict and effective, leaving little scope for any deviation, he said.

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