KATHMANDU, Oct 6: Altogether Rs 15.02 billion has been spent so far for the management of former Maoist combatants, who started living in various cantonments after the historic Comprehensive Peace Accord (CPA) reached between the government and the then rebel party in November, 2006.
While Rs 9.61 billion was spent from state coffers, the remaining Rs 5.41 billion was covered by the Peace Fund consisting of amounts donated by various countries.
According to expenditure details submitted by the Ministry of Peace and Reconstruction (MoPR) to the Special Committee for Supervision, Integration and Rehabilitation of Maoist combatants on Thursday, the Cantonment Management Office spent Rs 9.65 billion while Rs 1.53 billion was spent from the Peace Fund.
Likewise, the Special Committee Secretariat has incurred expenditures amounting to Rs 3.83 billion so far.
MoPR submitted the details of expenditures incurred for the former Maoist combatants to the Special Committee amid concerns raised from various quarters that there had been gross misappropriation of funds allocated for cantonment management.
Opposition parties including the Nepali Congress (NC) and CPN-UML have alleged that the Maoist leadership has misappropriated funds in the name of combatants who never existed or never lived in the cantonments.
Altogether 31,318 Maoist combatants began living in various cantonments as part of the peace process after the CPA was reached. Of them, 19,602 were later verified by UNMIN, the then United Nations Mission in Nepal.
According to expenditure details provided by MoPR, out of the total of Rs 6.65 billion spent for cantonment management, Rs 2.74 billion was spent for food and daily necessities, Rs 5.82 billion was spent for monthly allowances for former combatants, and Rs 271 million for infrastructure development at the cantonments.
Likewise, Rs 224.45 million is shown to have been spent under miscellaneous heads and Rs 128.69 million on administrative work over the years.
In addition to this, Maoist leader and then minister for peace and reconstruction Krishna Bahadur Mahara had received Rs 460.10 million in April, 2007 as monthly allowances for the cantoned combatants.
According to details furnished by MoPR, the Peace Fund spent Rs 743.15 million for building roads, Rs 341.46 million for drinking water facilities and Rs 411.03 million for other infrastructure. The expenditure details show Rs 325.85 million spent for health and Rs 25.33 million spent for electricity supply at the cantonments.
Of the total amount spent by the Special Committee Secretariat, Rs 19.01 million went into the establishment of monitoring teams in all seven main cantonments and 21 satellite cantonments and a situation room at the center, as well as into the administrative expenses of the Secretariat. An additional Rs 26.24 million was spent for establishing situation centers and covering the administrative and day-to-day expenses of the Secretariat.
Among other things, the Special Committee spent Rs 152.84 million to cover the expenses of security personnel deployed at various cantonments and the establishment of situation centers for them, Rs 4.90 million for allowances, uniforms and travel by those deputed for monitoring the cantonments and Rs 3.62 billion as installment amounts for Maoist combatants choosing to go into voluntary retirement.
Special Committee member representing NC, Dr Minendra Rijal, said they have received details of expenditures made by the peace ministry in the name of former Maoist combatants.
"Since there has been apprehension about corruption and misappropriation in the cantonments, we are currently studying the details furnished by the ministry. We will hold detailed discussions on the issue at our next meeting and take appropriate decisions," said Rijal.
Total expenses for former Maoist combatants State Coffers Rs 9.61 billion
Peace Fund Rs 5.41 billion