Bhubaneswar (Odisha) [India], July 23 (ANI): To fulfill the financial requirements for COVID-19 management in the state, the Odisha government will restrict the capital expenditure in non-priority sectors from the budgetary allocation of different departments for the financial year 2020-21.
The decision regarding this was taken at the Council of Ministers meeting held on Wednesday under the chairmanship of Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik to discuss COVID management and the future course of action.
"In view of the evolving COVID-19 situation and future financial need to tackle public health emergency, there will be rationalisation of expenditure at the government level, because our priorities are to save life and livelihood. Expenditures relating to health, social security, employment generation, livelihood, agriculture, horticulture, animal resources development sectors will be given priority. Especially, there will be no compromise for required expenditure in the health sector," Chief Secretary Asit Tripathy said at the meeting.
The rationalisation of expenditure is being done as the government has been providing quarantine facility, treatment, food and other essential things to the COVID-19 patients free of cost in the state.
The Chief Secretary said that while the ongoing projects will not be stopped, there will be restrictions on fresh investments in non-priority sectors.
Informing about the expenses incurred so far, Tripathy said, "Odisha government has so far spent around Rs 1912 crores, while Rs 340 crores has been spent from the Chief Ministers Relief Fund, Rs 624 crores from the SDRF, Rs 875 crores by Panchayati Raj Institutions and Rs 73 crores from MLA LAD fund."
As per the directions of Chief Minister Patnaik, persons who have successfully completed institutional quarantine are being given an incentive of Rs 2,000 each. "A sum of Rs 99,38,99,000 has been paid so far. This amount is given from the Chief Minister's Relief Fund," a release read.
As of now, 6,575 COVID Care Homes are operational in 6,798-gram Panchayats of Odisha. In all these centres, a total number of 65,569 beds have been arranged to provide COVID-19 health services. Along with this, 1,386 number of cluster-level temporary medical centres (TMCs) have been completed with 65,308 beds in the state. (ANI)