PM non-committal on helping states tide over fiscal woes: CM

Puducherry, May 12 (PTI) Puducherry Chief Minister V Narayanasamy has claimed that Prime Minister Narendra Modi was non-committal on fiscal assistance to states despite them apprising him of the financial sufferings during a video conference.

Therefore, there was no other option for the Union Territory except to borrow from the Reserve Bank of India to tide over the current fiscal crisis, he told reporters here on Monday night after participating in the video conference of chief ministers with Modi.

Narayanasamy said he had brought to the Prime Minister’s notice the fall in the revenue due to closure of all business establishments, liquor shops and industrial units since the COVID-19 lockdown began in March.

He said salaries were paid to the territorial government staff for March and April. But the present situation was grim and hence a way out should be found.

“The Prime Minister was non-committal on the fiscal assistance to states and there was no reply whatsoever from him to the projection of fiscal sufferings of the states,” he said.

Replying to a query, Narayanasamy said he felt that Modi would continue the lockdown beyond May 17 but ease curbs.

“A real picture will emerge only on the night of May 17,” he said.

The Prime Minister asked the Chief Ministers to send him a detailed report before May 15 on the next course of action.

Narayanasamy said people should be calm and help win the battle against the pandemic.