Centre asks state to claim refund once a year

 Fed up with the haphazard manner in which state governments sought reimbursements for duties they perform on behalf of the Centre, the Union Home Ministry has shot off a strongly worded letter asking them to claim the amount for a financial year at one go and not in a piecemeal manner.

State governments have been entrusted with the work related to registration of foreigners and their surveillance, grant of citizenship and deportation of a foreigner among others though these works come under the domain of the Centre.

The duties, which come under rules and orders framed under Foreigners Act of 1946, Passport (Entry into India) Act of 1920, and the Registration of Foreigners Act of 1939, have been delegated to the state governments.

As per the existing provision, the state governments or the Union territories initially incur the expenditure, on these functions, including setting up offices in the state secretariat, and the Home Ministry reimburses the amount.

The letter addressed to state Principal Home Secretaries and Home Secretaries noted that some of the states and Union territories are “irregular” in sending their proposals for reimbursements.

“Some states do not send reimbursement claims at all while some states bunch the claims of a few financial years and send these claims together at a time. There are also instances wherein reimbursement claims for small amounts (say, for deportation of a foreigner) are received piecemeal,” the letter said.

The Home Ministry asked the states to make reimbursement claims comprehensive for a particular financial year, including all the expenditure incurred by the concerned state in performing the functions.

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