Friday, February 26, 2010

Development projects will take a big hit

With only Rs 50 crore allocated for the Commonwealth Games in the Union Budget for 2010-2011, the Delhi government will cut down substantially on its spending on other development projects in the next fiscal.

Senior Delhi government officials said the government had utilised hundreds of crores meant for other development projects to create infrastructure keeping in mind the Commonwealth Games.

The officials said there is no option but to cut down on public spending.

Delhi government had recently asked the Centre for Rs 2,000 crore to offset its expenditures.

In the last budget too, Delhi received Rs 2,000 crore to develop infrastructure for the Commonwealth Games.

But Chief Minister Sheila Dikshit didn’t seem perturbed. She said less allocation for the Games is primarily because most of the infrastructure projects are either complete or will be ready soon.

“Whatever money we had required for the construction has already been given to us,” Dikshit said.

Despite the Centre’s cold shoulder, Delhi finance minister Dr A.K. Walia said there will be no let up in the execution of Games projects.

The central government has allocated an additional

Rs 903.63 crore under the Jawahar Lal Nehru Urban Renewal Mission (JNNURM) to the state to upgrade city’s infrastructure.

The money, said Walia, is a part funding of 35 per cent central government’s assistance to take up projects worth Rs 9,821 crore sanctioned under the scheme.

However, officials feel that bigger allocation to the state would have helped in improving Delhi’s financial health.

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