CAG Report · Meghalaya

CAG REPORT: Water Woes in Meghalaya

Guest Blog by Himanshu Upadhyaya

An audit report by Comptroller and Auditor General of India that got tabled in Meghalaya assembly on 23rd March 2016 reveals sorry state of affairs on water supply schemes. It brings under scanner the corrupt practices of Public Health and Engineering Department (PHED), presents before us the real causes of the delays in completion of these schemes. This performance review shows that PHED has failed to learn any lesson from similar indictment from constitutional auditor in past and continued its business as usual with impunity. The audit also shows in unambiguous manner how PHED officials failed to supply information and documents in support of their claims. CAG auditors have also presented photographic evidence of the undue favours granted to contractors and thus has shown that works that are shown as executed and paid for on records don’t exist on site. Will this performance audit of drinking water schemes in Meghalaya initiate a phase of more credible public audit, CAG try to ensure that performance audit leads to actual change on ground? I hope that citizens’ groups in Meghalaya will be able to use this. Continue reading “CAG REPORT: Water Woes in Meghalaya”

Urban Water Sector

Smart Cities need Smart Governance more than heavy infrastructure

The Center has just unveiled Implementation Guidelines of three of its biggest schemes so far 100 Smart Cities, Atal Mission for Rejuvenation and Urban Transformation (AMRUT) and Housing for All today. Stocks of Home Finance Companies are buzzing already. Construction company heads (who have invested heavily in creating urban holidays homes in rural villages) are happy, Industry analysts are excited about the explosive growth of “Cement, plastic and metal” this initiative will lead to, rather than the Mission itself. While the Prime Minister today said “development can’t create friction between cities and  rural areas”, such conflict is already simmering in several parts of country at the urban-rural divide, where rural areas are sinks for urban waste or sites for dams and power plants. Continue reading “Smart Cities need Smart Governance more than heavy infrastructure”