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Bengal govt failed to spend funds allotted by her ministry, claims Smriti Irani

The West Bengal government failed to utilize and spend a massive amount of Rs 270 crore granted by her department, Union Women and Child Development minister Smriti Irani said here on Saturday.

She was in Kolkata as a part of the party's drive to highlight the different positive aspects of the latest Union budget. While speaking to the newspersons the minister said that the state government could not spend a massive amount of Rs 27,000 lakhs or Rs 270 crore allocated just from her ministry.

"The Union government under the leadership of Prime Minister Narendra Modi is sending money for women and child development. But the state government is unable to utilize that fund. They should explain their inability on this count," Irani said.

She also claimed that there had been massive irregularities in West Bengal in utilization of funds allocated under the Pradhan Mantri Matru Vandana Yojana (PMKVY) and Integrated Child Development Services (ICDS) schemes. "Trinamool Congress leaders should better check their own documents and papers before pointing fingers towards the Union government," the Union minister said.

She alleged that the West Bengal government had spent the funds allocated under the PMKVY schemes behind the state's own projects. "We then asked for a written explanation from the state government on why the rules were flouted. The state government gave us a written declaration that henceforth they will follow the guidelines," Irani said.

Refuting her claims, senior Trinamool Congress leader and three- time Lok Sabha member Saugata Roy claimed that Smriti Irani is not aware of any sort of details. "She speaks a lot. She manages an extremely small ministry. She has forgotten that the state government shares matching grants for such projects announced by the Union government. Probably, something of that sort happened in this case as well," Roy said.

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