Fund crunch: Devp works can wait, Ludhiana MC should focus on meeting fixed expenses first: Minister - Hindustan Times
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Fund crunch: Devp works can wait, Ludhiana MC should focus on meeting fixed expenses first: Minister

By, Ludhiana
Oct 18, 2022 11:56 PM IST

Local bodies minister Inderbir Singh Nijjar urged the Ludhiana municipal corporation (MC) to prioritise meeting fixed expenses such as payment of salaries, electricity bills. Earlier also the finance and contracts committee (F and CC) of MC had cut short the number of projects to be taken up in the city at present. Citing fund crunch, the committee had asked councillors to prioritise the development works

At a time when Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) legislators and councillors of different political parties are promising development works ahead of municipal elections, local bodies minister Inderbir Singh Nijjar urged the municipal corporation (MC) to prioritise meeting fixed expenses such as payment of salaries, electricity bills.

The minister was responding to a query regarding the fund crunch being faced by the MC, during an event organised to hand over appointment letters to MC contractual staff at Guru Nanak Dev Bhawan. (Gurpreet Singh/HT)
The minister was responding to a query regarding the fund crunch being faced by the MC, during an event organised to hand over appointment letters to MC contractual staff at Guru Nanak Dev Bhawan. (Gurpreet Singh/HT)

The minister said development projects would be taken up, but not before the MC meets the fixed expenditure for the month. Projects like installation of tiles etc can wait, he said.

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The minister was responding to a query regarding the fund crunch being faced by the MC, during an event organised to hand over appointment letters to MC contractual staff at Guru Nanak Dev Bhawan on Tuesday.

Earlier also the finance and contracts committee (F and CC) of MC had cut short the number of projects to be taken up in the city at present. Citing fund crunch, the committee had asked councillors to prioritise the development works.

Even as mayor Balkar Sandhu has been stating that a 100-crore loan has been availed by the MC to take up development works in the city in the past, fund crunch has been taking a toll on the development work .

Facing acute fund crunch, the MC had been struggling to pay salaries in the past few months and the salaries had been credited to the accounts of employees with delay. The MC pays around 28-crore as monthly salary to its employees and after regularising the jobs of 3,542 contractual staff, the monthly salary will reach to around 32 crore.

Councillors urge the minister to ensure timely payment of GST instalment

During the event, councillors, including senior deputy mayor Sham Sundar Malhotra, Lok Insaaf Party (LIP) Swarandep Chahal among others, also raised the issue of delayed payment of GST instalment by the state to Ludhiana MC. The councillors demanded that the GST instalment of around 50-crore per month should be transferred to the MC without any delay so that the civic body can pay salaries to its staff on time.

Asking them to not worry, the minister said the government was streamlining the process and the MC’s share of GST would be provided to the civic body only.

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