AGARTALA, April 25 - The Tripura Government has adopted a slew of austerity measures in view of the economic crisis due to the COVID-19 outbreak.
In the 19-point austerity measures, the heads of all government departments, PSUs, local bodies and other government organisations have been asked to slash down non-essential expenditure.
�Office and contingent expenses should be cut down by 30 per cent, while the government departments should increase non-tax revenue by 10 per cent,� said Education Minister Ratan Lal Nath.
If any government official requires air conditioner or cable TV/DTH service, he or she must seek permission of the State Economy Board (SEB). Besides, a complete ban has been imposed on procurement of vehicles. The employees have also been told to use e-mail communication to avoid use of paper.
The heads of departments and other government organisations have also been asked to reduce expenditure on electricity and telephone by at least 10 per cent.
The State Government departments and organisations have been barred from holding fairs, programmes or exhibitions, but this would not apply to programmes sponsored by the Centre.
Most importantly, the Government will not buy any land as part of the austerity measures to ease the burden on the State�s economy.
Admitting that the State, which is heavily dependent on the Central Government, is passing through a very critical phase, the State Cabinet has approved of the stringent measures to address the fragile fiscal position.
Nath said the Fifteenth Finance Commission has already expressed concern over the increasing revenue expenditure.
Nath added that the Finance Commission has asked the State Government to control revenue expenditure as much as possible. According to the Commission, there must be efforts to redeploy work force in case of any shortage through rationalisation to curb revenue expenditure.