If local leaders of Dagana want to construct a new farm road or carry out any farm road-related works in the villages, they have to submit the proposal at the beginning of the financial year to the district administration. Until now, the local leaders used to submit the proposals at their convenience, sometimes in the middle of the fiscal year which is delaying the construction works. This is because such proposals have to be discussed for endorsement and approval in the Dzongkhag Tshogdu.
Till now, there was no specific date or month for the local leaders to submit their proposals.
A few local leaders also said the wait is too long as the Dzongkhag Tshogdu is conducted only twice a year.
“When there are machines nearby, the construction cost will be reduced. Moreover, we can improve the work. But we have to get it approved from the Dzongkhag Tshogdu which is taking time,” said Chador, Kana Gup.
“To initiate any developmental activities, gewog administrations have to plan as per the Budgetary Release Forecast. But when it comes to farm road construction, it is inconvenient since gewogs have to wait until the Dzongkhag Tshogdu approves the plan,” said Bal Bdr. Rana, the Chairperson of Dzongkhag Tshogdu.
“There is a risk of farm road constructions getting delayed or remaining as spillover work. As a result, the gewog administrations have to face consequences during auditing. If not, the Dzongkhag Tshogdu has to approve the farm road constructions a year ahead of the actual construction works,” said Samten Jamtsho, Tseza Gup.
Without much deliberation, with a show of hands, the house decided to do away with the existing trend of seeking farm road construction approval from the Dzongkhag Tshogdu. However, the house had to re-deliberate on the agenda and overturned the decision after the district planning officer requested the house to look into the possibility of reconsidering the decision.
The planning officer added that the condition of Dzongkhag Tshogdu as the approving authority is stated in the guidelines.
“If we don’t follow the guidelines, acts, rules and regulations, we will be liable and face consequences during auditing. Last year, there was auditing on farm roads and irrigation. We were reminded of developmental activities not being carried out as per the guidelines and relevant rules and regulations,” said Sonam Jamtsho, Sr. District Planning Officer.
“Instead of doing away with Dzongkhag Tshogdu’s approving authority, it would be better if we approve all the farm road-related works in July,” said Tashi Tobgay, Dagana Dzongda.
The house finally decided to submit all the farm road construction-related approvals at the beginning of the fiscal year for budget endorsement and farm road approvals.
The move is expected to solve the time-consuming procedure for farm road construction and the local leaders need to plan accordingly.
Pema Tshewang, Tsirang
Edited by Tshering Zam