Reduce unnecessary costs, prioritize spending for projects, says Kerala CM to bureaucrats

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CM Pinarayi Vijayan | Photo: Mathrubhumi

Thiruvananthapuram: Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan on Tuesday directed bureaucrats to keep a tab on their spending to tackle the financial repercussions faced by the state. The state has been going through a rough patch following the centre's decision to cut its borrowing limit, forcing various departments to freeze spending on state projects.

In a meeting convened in the presence of Finance Minister KN Balagopal and other cabinet ministers on Tuesday, Vijayan directed officials to prioritise spending based on matters of utmost importance.

The move came in the wake of some ministers' remark that various departments are struggling to disburse funds for projects of the government. Principal Secretaries and senior officials from various departments attended the meeting. Bishwanath Sinha, Additional Chief Secretary of the Department of Finance, also presented a report on the financial issues faced by the state.

Chief Minister directed the officials to prioritise their spending and exercise prudent measures to tackle unnecessary cost burdens. Meanwhile, priority has been given to the timely disbursal of funds for social security and social welfare pensions.

At the same time, the LDF government is awaiting a reply from the Centre regarding amounts that Kerala can borrow in the financial year 2023-24, as the figures have not yet been provided to the state.

Last week, Minister of State VM Muraleedharan claimed that Kerala was allowed to borrow Rs 55,182 crore in the financial year 2023-24 and out of that, the state has already taken around Rs 34,661 crore, leaving a balance of Rs 20,521 crore from which Rs 15,390 crore has been sanctioned for the first three quarter of the financial year.

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