Almost 90 per cent condom vending machines installed at public places by National Aids Control Organisation (NACO) for HIV/AIDS prevention have gone missing, a CAG report has said.
In its report tabled in Parliament today, the CAG has rapped NACO for failing to achieve the objective of improving the accessibility of condoms in high-risk areas due to poor planning and implementation.
The CAG report said the CVMs scheme "was characterised by poor planning and implementation and Ministry of Health did not undertake any feasibility study for it considering sale of condoms was very low as compared to projections by NACO."
It pointed out that in Phase I of the project, 11,025 CVMs were installed in high-risk areas of which 9,860 machines were not traceable or were lost. The audit found only 1,130 machines traceable but were not functioning.
"As the CVMs installed under Phase I were not insured against theft and damage, thus no recovery/claim could be made in respect of stolen machines," the CAG report said.
Similarly in Phase II of the project, 1546 machines were damaged, 161 stolen and 1791 could not be installed, the CAG said pointing out that Hindustan Latex was given the work of installation of CVMs by September 2005 for phase 1 and July 2008 for Phase II.
"The sale of condoms through CVMs was very low in comparison to projects of NACO. The intended objective of improving the accessibility of condoms in high risk areas through CVMs was not achieved despite investment of Rs 21.54 crore under the scheme.
"The hasty manner of release of funds by the Ministry under Phase II without ascertaining the status of CVMs installed earlier was inappropriate," CAG said.