Uttar Pradesh admits health scheme bungling

April 26th, 2011 - 10:11 pm ICT by IANS  

Lucknow, April 26 (IANS) Admitting large-scale financial irregularities in the execution of National Rural Health Mission (NRHM) schemes in Uttar Pradesh, the state government on Tuesday announced a system of multiple checks and balances to curb pilferage.

“We have decided to bring the entire NRHM operation under the scanner whereby every rupee spent is accounted for through a system of multiple checks and balances,” state Cabinet Secretary Shashank Shekhar Singh told a press conference here.

He conceded that it was the rampant corruption at various levels in the execution of the Rs.3,000 crore NRHM schemes that led to the murder of two successive chief medical officers for family welfare in Lucknow.

Vinod Kumar Arya was hot dead Oct 27, 2010, while B.P. Singh was killed April 2.

The government was determined not only to bring all malpractices to an end but also to bring to book those who were guilty in the murder of B.P. Singh, the official said.

He said: “Under the new arrangement, we will have both internal and external audit of all expenses related to the NRHM funds across the state.”

“Just as Dr. Arya was killed shortly after he began to undertake inspections of community health centres and primary health centres in the rural areas, Dr. Singh too became the target when he started following the same course,” the cabinet secretary added.

“Significantly, both had detected large-scale financial irregularities, which included fake payments in the name of hiring of manpower and vehicles, supply of medicines and equipment,” the official said.

Disclosing that the NRHM programme would henceforth be supervised by the chief secretary, he said the new checks and balances would ensure cleaner functioning and curb malpractices.

Two men were arrested over the killing of Vinod Arya.

The investigations into B.P. singh’s murder had led to the arrest of two doctors and two junior officials of the CMO’s office. However, the killers were still at large.

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