At Modi’s 5th video-conference, KCR may demand fiscal package for Telangana

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Telangana Chief Minister K Chandrasekhara Rao on Monday will raise the issue of fiscal stimulus package to the state government during the fifth video-conference of Prime Minister Narendra Modi with all the CMs.

While the chief ministers of the states and union territories are expected to push for stepping up economic activities in a calibrated manner, KCR as K Chandrasekhara Rao is popularly known, will explain the current financial status of the State arising out of the complete lockdown for more than 45 days to contain the spread of Covid-19. The PM’s video-conference will begin at 3 pm on Monday. KCR will demand for enhancement of the Fiscal Responsibility and Budget Management (FRBM) from the present 3.5% to 5%. Pointing out that the corona virus pandemic has dealt a huge blow to the state economy, KCR may reiterate his demand of deferring loan installments to be paid by the Telangana government by at least six months and also permission to raise more loans when Modi will discuss the way forward with all the CMs in the battle against the corona virus on Monday.

The Chief Minister may also broach the farmers distress situation in the state and demand linking agriculture to MNREGA.

In the last Cabinet meeting, KCR has extended the lockdown period till May 29 — 10 days after it is scheduled to end in the rest of the country. In the press briefing after the Cabinet meeting last week, KCR turned his ire against the central government for its failure to mitiage the state’s financial crisis due to the complete lockdown. To tide over the financial crisis, KCR had asked the central government to either give the states required power or money. KCR had sought Rs 10.15 lakh crore Quantitative Easing to counter the impending state financial crisis. In the press briefing, he had pointed out that Telangana”s monthly revenue has come down from Rs 17,000 crore to Rs 1,600 crore.

“Please increase FRBM limit as loans will be borne by the states and the Centre has to bear nothing. I asked for deferment on loan repayment at least for six months but there is no response. I am surprised what burden this will put on the Centre. What is this policy I am not able to understand. I am not happy with the attitude of the central government. It has not responded to the State’s request for deferment of instalments payable by the government on the loans it had availed. We will not keep quiet,” KCR had said.

The PM’s video-conference on Monday will be attended ministers of home and health, secretaries of these departments, chief secretaries and Director Generals of Police (DGPs) of all states will also be present along with the CMs in the meeting. All CMs will be given an opportunity to share their opinion in PM’s fifth video-conference with the CMs.

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