New Delhi: In the wake of heavy rains across the country, the Union Government relaxed the guidelines to immediately release Rs. 7,532 crore to 22 State Governments for the respective State Disaster Response Funds (SDRF).
The Department of Expenditure, Ministry of Finance, today released the amount as immediate assistance to States without waiting for the utilisation certificate of the amount provided to the States in the last financial year. The amount was released as per the recommendations of the Ministry of Home Affairs.
State-wise details of the amount released are as under:
The State Disaster Response Fund (SDRF) has been constituted in each State under Section 48 (1) (a) of the Disaster Management Act, 2005. The fund is the primary fund available to State Governments for responses to notified disasters. The Central Government contributes 75% to the SDRF in general States and 90% in North-East and the Himalayan States.
The annual Central contribution is released in two equal instalments as per the recommendation of the Finance Commission. As per the guidelines, the funds are released on receipt of the Utilisation Certificate of the amount released in the earlier instalment and receipt of a report from the State Government on the activities undertaken by SDRF. However, in view of the urgency, these requirements were waived while releasing the funds this time.
The SDRF is to be used only for meeting the expenditure for providing immediate relief to the victims of notified calamities like cyclones, droughts, earthquakes, fires, floods, tsunamis, hailstorms, landslides, avalanches, cloud bursts, pest attacks and frost and cold wave.
Allocation of SDRF funds to the States is based on multiple factors like past expenditure, area, population, and disaster risk index. These factors reflect States’ institutional capacity, risk exposure, and hazard and vulnerability.
Based on the 15th Finance Commission recommendations, the Central Government has allocated Rs. 1,28,122.40 crore for SDRF for the years 2021-22 to 2025-26. Out of this amount, the Central Government’s share is Rs.98,080.80 crore. The Central Government had already released Rs. 34,140.00 crore before the current release. With the current release, the total amount of Central share of SDRF released to the State Governments so far has gone up to Rs. 42,366 crore.
– global bihari bureau