Regulators

Avoid 'slippages' of film sector budget utilisation, House panel recommends

NEW DELHI: While noting the ‘slippages which could have been avoided’, a Parliamentary Committee has taking serious note of the continuous reduction in expenditure in the film sector despite reasonable budgetary allocations.

The Parliamentary Standing Committee on Information Technology which also examines issues relating to Information and Broadcasting Ministry asked the Ministry to be “more cautious and take necessary corrective steps so that there are no cost and time over run of Schemes in the film sector”.

A sum of just Rs 835.6 million out of a reduced revised estimate of Rs 1.3439 billion was utilized in the film sector in 2016-17 because of various reasons including among other reasons the Request for Proposal (RFP) and stakeholder consultation process in the National Film Heritage Mission has resulted in under utilization of funds.

The Committee was told that the original budget estimate was Rs 1.4148 billion against the proposed Rs 2.4512 billion for the film sector.

For the shortfall in expenditure, the Ministry also blamed delays in late approval and prolonged inter-ministerial consultations and RFP for selection of private partners in setting up of National Centre of Excellence for Animation, Gaming and Special Effects.

The Ministry attributed delay in raising Bills for the International Film Festival of Goa and conducting of major film festival during the last quarter to be some of the reasons for under utilization of funds.

 

The Committee noted that the allocation under film sector has been enhanced from Rs 1.3439 billion at revised estimate stage in 2016-17 to Rs 2.07 billion at budget stage for the year 2017-18.

The enhanced allocation is to be utilized in respect of Scheme of NFHM where RFP for preventive conservation of film reels, digitization of films, 2K/4K picture and sound restoration of landmark feature films and short films etc are to be floated during 2017-18.

While expressing satisfaction that the film sector has got an enhanced allocation this year, the Committee said the Ministry should take advantage and give more focused attention to Schemes under this sector and concerted efforts be made for optimum utilization of funds allocated for the year 2017-18.

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