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West Bengal reiterates demand to release over ₹5,000 cr as Revenue Deficit Grant

Our BureauNew Delhi, April 6 | Updated on April 06, 2020 Published on April 06, 2020

The West Bengal Government has urged the Centre to release over ₹5,000 crore in three equal instalments as part of Revenue Deficit Grant.

In a letter to the Union Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman, the State Finance Minister Amit Mitra, wrote: “I urge you to release the entire sum of Revenue Deficit Grant provided by the 15th Finance Commission to State of West Bengal of ₹5,013 crore in three instalments, each of ₹1,671 crore for the month of April, May and June of 2020.”

Though, such a request was made earlier too, the Centre released only an amount of ₹417 crore for the month of April. Expressing dismay over this allocation, Mitra alleged that allotment has been done in the routine manner. “This is most disappointing if not shocking, at this critical hour of need to fight Covid-19 and disburse committed expenditure,” he said.

West Bengal and many other States have appealed to the Centre seeking more funds as their source of funds are drying up. The States have two important source of earning — fuel and alcohol. The lockdown has affected fuel sale, while alcohol business has come to a stand still. At the same time, GST collections have also been affected. However, there are committed expenditures beside the additional expenditure due to Covid-19.

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Published on April 06, 2020
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