The Meghalaya government has temporarily suspended the 'Delegation of Financial Powers' rules in view of the financial crisis in the state, officials said on Thursday.
The finance department's orders clipping the powers of department heads to utilise public money and directing them to get approval of the finance department for all expenditures come two months ahead of the 2018 assembly election and will continue till the end of 2017-18, they said.
"To enable the finance department to effectively monitor the expenditure of the state, it has become necessary for the finance department to withdraw the powers of the departments to make expenditure at their level by temporarily withdrawing the Meghalaya Delegation of Financial Power (DFP) Rules 2006," Finance secretary A Bhagotia said in the order issued to all head of departments last week. The withdrawal of the DFP rules means that all expenditure to be incurred by the department, their district and subordinate offices will require the approval of the finance department, he said.
The latest direction of the finance department was necessary on account of the implementation of the pay hike recommendations as per the Fifth Pay Commission and the pay being drawn by government employees ahead of Christmas and New Year celebrations which will cause a significant outflow from the state’s exchequer during the month and the subsequent three months of the fourth quarter of the fiscal, the official said.
The Meghalaya cabinet had in November approved a recommendation of Fifth Pay Commission and over 80,000 government employees will benefit from the new pay structure that will cost the state exchequer nearly Rs 1000 crore in the current financial year alone.