PANAJI: The senior Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) leader, Mr Manohar Parrikar, said that the implementation of various schemes mentioned in the BJP manifesto would require a fund between Rs 550 and Rs 600 crore annually, which could be raised at the local level itself, without approaching the Centre for financial assistance.
It may be recalled that the BJP, in its manifesto had assured that the petrol prices in Goa would be reduced by Rs 11 a litre through removal of VAT with effect from April 2. The party had also promised housewives an inflation allowance of ` 1,000 per month to fight the price rise from the coming Ganesh Chaturthi festival onwards. Furthermore, in its manifesto, the BJP had promised ` 1 lakh to be deposited as marriage expenses in the bank account of every girl, once she completes 18 years of age, and assured a hike in pension amount under the Dayanand Social Security scheme from ` 1,000 to ` 2,000 per month.
Addressing the media on Thursday, Mr Parrikar said that if the BJP government comes to power, it would immediately plug all leakages in the state administration, and channelise the saved money towards the welfare of the Goan people.
“The Digambar Kamat government has been annually looting the government exchequer of around ` 500 crore, and this money can be made available for implementing the promises in the BJP manifesto,” he stated, pointing out that the remaining ` 100 crore would come from the state’s annual growth.
Providing a breakup of the Rs 500 crore amount, Mr Parrikar said that the annual tenders of the Public Works Department worth ` 400 crore, have at least 20 per cent of the amount that is ` 80 crore going away in the form of commissions.
“Furthermore, the state experiences a loss of ` 100 crore by way of mining cess and another loss of ` 200 crore through mining royalty,” he informed, observing that besides this collective amount of ` 380 crore, another ` 120 crore can be saved by plugging few other leakages in the exchequer.
“That way, the available amount of Rs 500 crore, plus ` 100 crore from the state’s annual growth can easily fulfill the assurances in the BJP manifesto, without seeking central funds,” he concluded.