The centre has accused the Kerala government of not spending 50 per cent of the funds released for relief and rehabilitation purposes after the 2018 floods.
The Ministry of Home Affairs had released Rs 3,000 crore as relief in the aftermath of the floods, which claimed 488 lives and caused widespread devastation in the state. "Of the Rs 3,000 crore we released, they spent only 50 per cent," a senior official told NDTV.
The official said that although Kerala asked for an additional Rs 2,000 crore in funding, the centre would not give it in the absence of an utilisation certificate. "Funds amounting to Rs 3,048.39 crore was given to Kerala in December 2018 as relief for the floods that year. As of April 2019, the state government spent just Rs 900 crore and no utilisation certificates came for the remaining Rs 2,100 crore," he added.
The official said that the Kerala government spent some more funds from April to December-end, but it only came up to about half the sanctioned amount of Rs 3,048.39 crore.
Kerala had sought Rs 4,700 crore as compensation from the central government for damage caused due to the 2018 floods, which was termed as the worst this century. At least 488 people died in Kerala amid monsoon rains and floods, which hit 14 districts of the state in 2018.
According to the official, the centre did not take any decision on the state's request for the 2019 flood damage compensation because all the utilisation certificates for the first tranche of funds were yet to come in. "The Union government will release more funds only after receiving utilisation certificates for funds already given to Kerala," another official said.