Home Secy reviews development works in UT of Ladakh

Union Home Secretary Ajay Kumar Bhalla today reviewed development works in the Union Territory of Ladakh with top officials of the UT administration through virtual mode.

The virtual meeting, chaired by Bhalla, was attended by Umang Narula, Advisor to Lieutenant Governor Radha Krishna Mathur and all Administrative Secretaries.

During the meeting, the Union Home Secretary reviewed the utilization of funds and the pace of implementation of developmental schemes in the Union Territory of Ladakh.

“Union Home Secretary Ajay Bhalla chaired a virtual meeting in the presence of Umang Narula, Advisor to Lieutenant Governor of Ladakh and all Administrative Secretaries to review the utilization of funds and pace of implementation of development schemes by the Union Territory,” an official tweet by the Ladakh administration after nearly an hour-long meeting, said.

Bhalla appreciated the progress in various works undertaken in the Leh and Kargil districts of Ladakh.

He assured all requisite support to Ladakh administration from the Union Ministry of Home Affairs.

Sources said the Administrative Secretaries gave detailed feedback of development works undertaken by their departments in the Union Territory of Ladakh to the Home Secretary including timelines set for completion of works.

Ladakh’s development works review by the Union Home Secretary came just two days after Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman announced Rs 5958 crore worth Central grants for the Union Territory in the annual budget presented by her in the Parliament.

Significantly, there was no increase in the Central grants for the Union Territory of Ladakh for the next financial year of 2022-23 as compared to the current fiscal year of 2021-22.

Compared to this, the Union Territory of Jammu and Kashmir was given Rs 877 crore worth hike in the Central assistance in the budget.

Out of total Central grants of Rs 5958 crore for the Union Territory of Ladakh for 2022-23, Rs 4011 crore are under Other Central Sector Expenditure and Rs 1946 crore under Establishment Expenditure of the Centre.

Under the Scheme of Union Territory, Ladakh has been sanctioned Rs 289.18 crore as Revenue expenditure and Rs 233.47 crore as Capital expenditure.

As Ladakh is Union Territory without Legislature, it’s all grants are released by the Central Government after finalization by the Union Ministry of Home Affairs.

However, Jammu and Kashmir are the Union Territory with Legislature and, therefore, its budget will be presented separately in the Parliament by the Finance Minister as there is no Assembly in the UT because of delay in the conduct of Assembly elections.

The Union Territory of Ladakh has a very limited working season due to extremely harsh weather conditions in the winter from November to March.