‘Textile park running with furniture works’: CAG Report rips apart Centre’s Integrated Textile Park Scheme

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By Our Special Correspondent

New Delhi, March 27: “One (textile) park was found running with non-textile activities like engineering works, furniture works, seeds processing, etc,” said the Comptroller and Auditor General of India (CAG) in a report, which was tabled in Parliament on Monday. Suggesting that the Integrated Textile Park Scheme, which had first been introduced in 2005 and now extended till 2027, the CAG Report underlined a state of recklessness of the scheme.

“Further, one Park was found seized by bank,” the CAG stated about the state of completed textile parks. Out of the eight sampled ongoing Parks, the CAG conducted field visits in five parks and found that three of them, where grants aggregating to Rs 79.61 crore were released and considered as operational by the Ministry, were stuck due to non-availability of statutory clearances.

“The Ministry had released grants (ranging between 60 per cent and 79 per cent of the total grant) based on recommendations of the Project Management Consultants without ensuring availability of statutory clearances before commencement of the Parks,” said the CAG in its report.

The top auditor of the country also slammed the Ministry of Textile for not working in coordination with the state governments, stating that this was one of the main reasons for the failure of various projects. “The Ministry did not involve the State Governments for participation in the Scheme and their recommendations were not sought by the Ministry before approval of the Parks. Non-involvement of the State Governments at the appropriate stage of the projects had been one of the major reasons of the project failure as various projects suffered due to land issues, power supply, water supply and statutory clearances,” added the CAG in the report.

“Even after a lapse of 16 years from the inception of the Scheme, the actual achievement of the 56 completed/ ongoing Parks was 30 per cent in terms of employment generation, 50 per cent in terms of investments and 37 per cent in terms of setting-up of textile units, as against the targets set in the detailed project reports of the Parks,” noted the CAG in its report.

The Centre had unveiled the Integrated Textile Parks (SITP) Scheme in 2005 to create new facilities of international standards and provide the textile industry with world-class infrastructure facilities for setting up textile units. The Scheme was continued during the 11th Plan period (2007-12), 12th Plan period (2012-17) and another period of three years from 01 April 2017 to 31 March 2020.The Scheme has further been extended up to the year 2025-26 for completion of the projects already sanctioned under it.

The top auditor listed that there were delays ranging from one year to more than 10 years in completion of Parks. Further, 43 per cent of the total sanctioned Parks were cancelled, said the CAG. “The Ministry considered the Parks as ‘completed’ solely on the basis of recommendation of the Project Management Consultant, without ensuring the veracity of the recommendation through independent physical verification by its own officials,” added the CAG.

“In respect of Surat Super Yarn Park, the Ministry allowed to purchase 2×7.5 MW second-hand Captive Power Plant (turbine and boiler including some of the auxiliaries) from China at a cost of Rs 42.30 crore. Only one unit of Captive Power Plant was commissioned in the year 2012 but it became non-operational within a year of its commissioning and subsequently the Park also got shut down,” added the CAG.

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