Kolkata, Sep 28 (PTI) The West Bengal government has turned down a request from the Governor's House to increase its budget allocation, a senior official said on Monday.
The governor's office had written to the state secretariat a couple of times in the recent past, seeking additional funds of Rs 53.5 lakh to meet everyday expenses.
The state government, however, expressed its inability to allot more funds, claiming that it has adopted austerity measures amid the COVID-19 pandemic.
'The governor's office had sought additional funds of Rs 53.5 lakh. As our state has adopted certain austerity measures to handle expenses during this pandemic, the request was turned down,' the official at the state secretariat said.
Notably, the state finance department has slashed 50 per cent of the budget allotted to the Raj Bhavan, and set aside Rs 16 crore for its expenditure in 2020-21 fiscal.
According to the official, the government had to cut down on budget for all its departments, and not just the Governor's House, as it needed funds to meet 'unforeseen expenditure', if any, in the midst of the pandemic.
The state has also extended the period for undertaking austerity measures from September to March 31 next year.
As part of the measures, the government had said in April that no new schemes will be taken up and urgent public interest programmes will require prior approval of the finance department.
It also said that no purchase of vehicles, computers, IT-related accessories, furniture, ACs and TVs would be made during the period. PTI SCH RMS RMS