Hooghly River Bridge Commissioners (HRBC), a state government undertaking, failed to avail to an opportunity to earn additional interest of Rs. 79 crore due to lack of monitoring over investment of its surplus funds, according to a report of Comptroller and Auditor General (CAG) of India placed in the Assembly this month.
The CAG report pointed out a sum of Rs 73 crores was deposited in an account of State Bank of India in special term deposits, but the amount remained with the bank beyond the date of maturity of the term deposited resulting in loss of interest, it stated.
The main source of revenue of HRBC is toll from vehicles plying over Vidyasagar Setu. A part of this revenue, along with receipts from various departments for deposit works which were not required for immediate use, were invested in term deposit funds stipulate sits in nationalised banks.
Guidelines issued by the state finance department for opening and maintenance of government funds stipulate that verification and reconciliation of balance of bank accounts should be done at the earliest and once in a month. It should be done by personal visit to the bank by a responsible officer, the guidelines stated.
The CAG report found that HRBC failed to instruct the bank in time for renewal of deposits, no interest was paid by the bank. The amount was invested between the period February to July, 2013, it stated.
This lapse led to HRBC not getting an interest of Rs 2.36 crores. After it was pointed out by audit report, HRBC took up the matter with the concerned bank but could realise only Rs 1.56 while the rest of the balance was lost.
The matter was reported to the state finance department.But no reply was received till December, 2016, the CAG report added.