80 per cent rise in Delhi government spending in April and May due to COVID second wave: Sisodia


By Express News Service

NEW DELHI:  The surge in coronavirus infections this year has led to unprecedented rise in Delhi government’s expenditures in April and May.

Deputy Chief Minister Manish Sisodia on Thursday said that government’s spending increased around 80 per cent during the first two months of the current financial year as compared to the corresponding period of previous fiscals as several Covid relief measures were undertaken.

Sisodia, who also holds the charge of finance department, further informed that total revenue receipts were Rs 5,273.26 crore in April and May, while expenditures were Rs 8,511.09 crore. 

“Delhi has incurred Rs 3,237.83 crore more than its receipts which were met from last year’s savings.  Historically, during the first two months, the expenditure was Rs 4705.14 crore in the financial year 2019-20 and Rs 4,965.58 crore in 2020-21. Due to unprecedented Covid surge, the expenditure during the first two months of 2021-22 fiscal has jumped to Rs 8,511.09 crore,” the deputy CM said.  

Given the situation, the government has issued an order for expenditure management and rationalisation in view of the ongoing pandemic and to curtail “extraordinary expenditure”.

The government had put restrictions on expenditure after the pandemic crisis aggravated in July last year.  

Also, orders were issued to regulate expenses for which authorisation power was limited to certain higher ranking officials. 

In September, some relaxations were given under which all department heads or administrative secretaries were allowed to incur expenditure as per the budget.

However, within a week, the curb was reintroduced given the pressure on resources and for better cash management to deal with the pandemic crisis.

“Tax collection has declined due to the second wave and lockdown, while the expenditure has increased in comparison with the previous years for implementation of various relief and other measures to check the spread of Covid,” Sisodia said while justifying the fresh move.

Various welfare schemes being run for the citizens of Delhi will remain unchanged, he said.

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