RTI reveals only 11% of Idukki package utilized in five years
On the basis of a report submitted by Dr. M. S. Swaminathan, the central government had announced a Rs. 1,876 crore Idukki Package in 2008 to give a boost to the agrarian economy of the backward hill district.
In the same year, Rs. 750 crore was taken away to provide relief on the farm loans to the debt-ridden farmers under the national loan-waiver scheme. Thereafter, schemes were formulated worth Rs. 764.45 crore and the rest Rs. 361.55 cr was meant for an action plan to stabilize the price of cardamom and for research to improve the productivity of rubber, coffee, tea, cardamom and pepper. However, the reply to an application filed under the Right to Information (RTI) Act has revealed that in almost last five years only Rs.132 crore of the stipulated Rs. 1,126 crore has been spent under the scheme.
The activists have alleged that the lack of political will and bureaucratic apathy has resulted in the poor implementation of the package and that the ineffectiveness of the package might be because of the corruption involved.