NESIDS

North East Special Infrastructure Development Scheme (NESIDS)

North East Special Infrastructure Development Scheme (NESIDS)

The North East Special Infrastructure Development Scheme, or commonly known as NESIDS, was sanctioned by the Government of India to focus on projects relating to infrastructure creation concerning water supply, power and connectivity, and thereby enhancing tourism. It also focuses on the social infrastructure of the primary and secondary sectors of health and education. This article talks about the various essentials of the North East Special Infrastructure Development Scheme.

Objectives

The following are the objectives of the North East Special Infrastructure Development Scheme (NESIDS).

  • To ensure focused development of the North East Region by providing financial assistance to support projects related to the following:
    • Physical infrastructures with respect to water supply, power and connectivity.
    • Projects that promote tourism.
    • Social sector for the creation of infrastructures in the primary and secondary sectors of education and health.

The NESIDS will be considered to be over and above the existing schemes of the Government of India and the State Governments of the North East Region. Only projects which are not supported under any other scheme of the Central or the State Government would be considered for funding under this Scheme.

Sanction of Projects

The following is the process by which every project proposed to the Ministry of Development of North East Region (Ministry of DoNER) is approved and implemented.

  • After the Ministry of DoNER receives the recommendations of the SLEC, the proposal of the project(s) will be placed before NESIDS Committee for the sanction/ non-sanction. Therefore, the Committee will make considerations and make suitable recommendations.
  • The recommendations of the NESIDS Committee will be submitted to the Honourable Minister in-charge of the DoNER for further approvals.
  • After the requisite approvals from the concerned authorities, the project will be sanctioned. A project is typically sanctioned by issuing the Administrative and Financial sanction of the said project. A token amount of INR 10 Lakhs will be released after consultations with the Integrated Finance Division (IFD) and based on their recommendations.
  • Works shall be awarded for the project within 6 months from the issuance of the sanction by the Ministry. A copy of the work order would also be endorsed to the Ministry of DoNER. If the Ministry of DoNER has not received a work order within 6 months of the releasing the token amount, the approval for the project may be cancelled.
  • The State Government will undertake no work before the issuance of the administrative and financial approval by the Ministry of DoNER. No Contract Agreements or Awards of works should be offered before the sanction of the project. Any work executed before the sanction of the project will not be funded by the Ministry.
  • State Governments are required to award the contract after fulfilling all the essential formalities in a transparent manner. Tender notices and contracts may indicate binding clauses for various incentives for contractors in the case of early completion and appropriate penal provision for the delay.

Disbursement of Funds

The following is the process by which funds are approved and disbursed for the implementation of projects under the North East Special Infrastructure Development Scheme (NESIDS).

  • The funds for the implementation of the project will be released to designated agencies with the help of the State Government treasuries. This is executed under the particular dispensation order of the Ministry of Finance.
  • The State Government will have PFMS portal installed at the State level and link their treasuries to the same of the Ministry of DoNER. This is to track funds that have been released under the Scheme.
  • The Ministry of DoNER will release the funds in two instalments. First, 40% of the total allocated funds for the project will be disbursed, and then, the remaining 60% will be disbursed after reviewing the progress.
  • At the time of administrative and financial sanctioning, a token amount of INR 10 Lakhs will be released by the Ministry of DoNER. This amount would be a part payment of the first instalment in order to initiate tender formalities and for the State Government to finalise the same. After that, the State Government is required to approach the Ministry with a copy of the project’s work order and a letter claiming the release of the remaining amount of the first instalment of funds.
  • Generally, fresh sanctions for the funds will not be issued if the unspent amount of an individual State is 3 times more than the normative allocation of the said State.
  • The Ministry of DoNER will release the second instalment of funds for the project. This will be initiated once the State Government submits their utilisation certificate for a minimum of 75% of the first instalment funds that were released. Along with the certificate, the relevant physical progress that is duly signed by the Head of the designated agency and countersigned by the Planning Secretary of the State Government has to be submitted as well.
  • Therefore, the request for the release of subsequent instalment of funds for the project must be submitted by the concerned State and must be accompanied by the following:
    • Utilisation Certificates (UC), indicating 75% of the first instalment that was released (GFR 12-C).
    • Quarterly Progress Report (QPR)
    • Photographs and other proofs that indicate the completion of the works that the funds were used for.
    • Inspection report from the concerned Nodal Officer.
  • The concerned State will be responsible and liable to meet any expenses that cross the over and above the approved cost in any given project if caused due to delay in implementation or any other reason.
  • After the project is completed, a Completion Certificate along with the Utilisation Certificate of the total funds that were released will be submitted by the designated agency through the State Government.
  • Any delay in completion of a project may cause a cut in the subsequent normative allocation of the concerned State Government.

Monitoring and Evaluation

The following is the process of monitoring and evaluating various aspects of the North East Special Infrastructure Development Scheme (NESIDS).

  • The State Government of the concerned State will implement a robust monitoring mechanism for the proper execution of projects that are sanctioned under the NESIDS.
  • Preferably, the mechanism will comprise of officials who are not directly concerned with the execution of a particular project.
  • The State Government will carry out inspections periodically for quicker execution of projects and timely completion of the same.
  • The designated agency of the State Government will appoint a Nodal Officer for every project that is sanctioned in order to complete the same as per their pre-determined schedule.
  • The designated agency of the State Government will be publicly announcing the project in a local area.
  • The State Government will encourage the use of modern tools and technologies for the purpose of monitoring the projects.
  • Monitoring and evaluation of the implementation progress of a project will be undertaken with the help of various field inspections by officers of the Ministry of DoNER. Additionally, impact studies, social audits and evaluations will be executed by the concerned Government through independent agencies at the request of the Ministry of DoNER.
  • The Ministries of the Government of India may conduct inspections of the project with the help of their officials while visiting the project area.

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