TS walks path of austerity to tackle cash crunch
The Telangana government, which is reeling under severe financial crisis since the imposition of lockdown in March, has initiated measures to limit expenditure incurred by officials
Hyderabad: The Telangana government, which is reeling under severe financial crisis since the imposition of lockdown in March, has initiated measures to limit expenditure incurred by officials.
Thanks to the deadly coronavirus, the government has clipped the wings of Babus working in the Secretariat, Heads of various departments (HoDs) and also district officials on their lavish spending of public money.
All the officials have been asked to cut the expenditure incurred on the maintenance of their vehicles and also their posh offices. The government has already stopped allotting hired vehicles to the officials in different ranks on official duty from this month.
The district authorities have been asked to utilize the available government vehicles for the transportation of senior officials.
Top officials said that Chief Secretary Somesh Kumar instructed the District Collectors to cut the expenditure on hiring vehicles and office maintenance in the crisis time. Many officials like District Planning Officers, Statistical Officers and some senior officials working in the district headquarters have been asked to stop hiring vehicles and instead use vehicles of other departments which are lying idle in the lockdown period.
The District Collectors have been asked to utilize the available funds for emergency needs only for Medical, Police and Municipal Administration and Urban Development departments, which were actively engaged in the tackling of the corona pandemic in the state.
The government also stopped releasing office maintenance funds to the officials who were in the rank of Head of the department in the state headquarters. The officials were instructed to utilise the funds judiciously for development works only.
The Secretary-level officials were also asked to adopt austerity measures by reducIng the expenses being incurred on the conduct of meetings and visits and instead hold videoconferences with their subordinates in the crisis time. The senior officials were asked to minimize their outstation official visits unless it is important and most urgent.
The government also suggested to the Secretaries to use only one four-wheeler on a regular basis. Earlier, the Secretaries were authorized to allot vehicles to their Personal Secretaries and OSDs (Officer on Special Duty) for official work.
Sources said that the government is releasing required funds to the departments which have been implementing the welfare schemes only. The welfare departments were permitted to get the pending release of funds in the previous financial year.
No funds have been released to any department even as the first quarter of the current financial year ended with June 30.
All the other departments like the Roads and Buildings, Panchayat Raj, Municipal Administration were instructed to stop clearing the bills of contract works until the state Finance department gives its nod.