Chandigarh: The Punjab government on Thursday approved a Rs 13,000 crore plan for development of all the 12,775 villages in the state.
The villages would be covered under the integrated Rural Development Plan in three years in a phased manner, Deputy Chief Minister Sukhbir Singh Badal said after a meeting of the Special Core Group attended by senior ministers and MLAs.
He said the plan would focus on complete concretisation of all village roads and providing underground piped sewerage.
He said emphasis would be laid on quality control in work execution, completion of allotted work within stipulated time and completing the total development work of one village in one go.
Expressing concern over poor financial management of the panchayat funds, Badal said the Rural Development Department in future would transfer all the funds to Panchayats through a central banking system online and seek utilisation certificate of funds withdrawn from the bank accounts positively within one week.
He said failure to submit utilisation certificate would invite criminal action.
Badal said works in the villages have to be executed by reputed infrastructure companies, who have to be allotted work of all villages located in one block.
He also asked the department to tone-up its lax audit system and scan the total spending by panchayats timely and suggested the Principal Secretary, Finance, to work out a Special Audit System.