New Delhi, Jul 5 (IANS): Union Minister for Consumer Affairs, Food and Public Distribution (CA, F&PD) on Tuesday Piyush Goyal criticised states that are delaying submission of audited documents for receiving subsidies and gave them a deadline of August 15 to complete the procedure.
On Tuesday, at a conference of food ministers from across India, Goyal also warned the states that the Centre will not pay any interest if the delay is caused due to the state's lethargy.
"If you don't comply with audited documents within the stipulated date, we will not pay any dues, but we will also not pay any interest on it."
Goyal was talking about the food subsidy to the states as paid by the Centre. Stating that even the Centre is answerable to the public, the Minister announced that the deadline to submit claims of pending dues till the year 2019-20 is August 15.
Several states have not provided audited documents to support their claims for subsidies.
"No dues will be entertained after this deadline. All the pending bills of the states / UTs that will finalise the audited accounts with supporting documents by August 15, 2022, will be cleared within 60 days i.e., by October 15," he said.
He also gave a deadline to his staff and officers for paying by January 31 next year the pending bills of the states / UTs that provide documents by September 30. "And the states / UTs that will take longer than that, they will not be paid any interest," he threatened.
When many participating states / UTs raised concern over the delay in CAG audit, the Minister said he will get in touch with the CAG for expediting the audits of the food departments of those states.
Goyal's stiff stance came in wake of the announcement that all claims after April 2020 are going to be digitised and therefore, before embarking on that system, the old dues need to be cleared in the old system.