COVID-19 Impact: Assam Finance Dept Bans Purchasing Of New Govt Vehicles

Government has also banned meetings and conferences in five-star hotels


With the current financial situation in the state due to the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak, the Assam Government has decided to rationalize expenditure by stopping the purchasing of new vehicles and several travelling of government representatives in executive class.

In a notification, the government said, “Finance Department has been issuing austerity instructions from time to time with a view to containing non-developmental expenditure and releasing of additional resources for priority schemes. Such measures are intended at promoting fiscal discipline, without restricting the operational efficiency of the Government.”

It further added, “In the context of the current fiscal situation arising out of the outbreak of COVID-19, there is a need to rationalize expenditure and optimize available resources. With a view to mitigating the present economic crisis, the Assam Governor, Assam Chief Minister and Council of Ministers have already decided to donate 30 per cent of their salary to the Chief Minister’s Relief Fund.”

It added that all sanctioning power delegated to the Administrative Departments and Heads of relating to the issuance of Administrative Approval and Financial Sanction in respect of SOPD Schemes is hereby withdrawn until further orders. However, the Departments may approach Finance Department with full justification for the prior concurrence of schemes they propose to implement.

It further read that all expenses pertaining to Industrial exemptions, subsidies and incentives of various sectors are hereby suspended until further orders. No reimbursement of GST to industries will be allowed in the first quarter of the current financial year.

The department then banned the purchase of vehicles until further orders, except ambulances and vehicles required for police duty. “This will, however, be permitted only with the approval of the Chief Minister”, the notification added.

Utmost economy shall be observed in organizing conferences, seminars, workshops, fairs and functions. Holding of such banned is totally banned in the first quarter in the physical mode. There will be a ban on holding of meetings and conferences in five-star hotels.

No officer will be allowed to attend any foreign training course, workshop, seminar outside India for which expenditure has to be borne by the State Government.

Remuneration in respect of Chairman and Vice-Chairman of all PSUs, Corporations andBoards will be reduced by 25 per cent.

Release of MLA Area Development Fund will remain suspended in the first four months of the current financial year or until further orders, whichever is earlier.

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