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Central package to ensure cash flow to Assam, says Sarma

Press Trust of India  |  Guwahati 

The Rs 20 lakh crore economic

package announced by Prime Minister Narendra Modi for the country will ensure increase in cash flow to Assam, helping maintain the liquidity required for various schemes, state Finance Minister Himanta Biswa Sarma said on Monday.

The package will ensure cash buoyancy of Rs 10,000 crore and help in tiding over the immediate problems being faced by the people in the state due to the lockdown, the minister said at a press conference here.

"A month back, I was worried about cash flow for the budget proposals, but now there is hope that these will be protected," Sarma said.

The measures taken will directly help people and the state government will also try to match up with the Centre's proposal to make the state an 'Atmanirbhar Assam', he said.

"The extension of the limit on the overdraft facility along with the special drawing facilities are the fiscal support which will ensure that liquidity is maintained and we can take full benefit of the package," he said.

The state power board was under pressure from the generation companies to pay for power received but the consumers had not paid for the last two months and there was a severe threat of electricity being disconnected, the minister said.

The state boards can now make the payment by taking a loan being made available by the package and repay it once the consumers start paying, he said.

The MSME sector will also get a major boost from this package and the state government is preparing a detailed paper to facilitate 66,000 people eligible for bank loans without a mortgage, he said.

Besides, those MSME units which are closed and have been declared as non-performing assets will be given a one- time waiver which will help them revive these units, Sarma added.

The Centre's decision to provide 5 kgs of rice to migrants will also help many who are returning to the state and have no livelihoods to fall back on, the minister said.

The Kisan Credit Cards (KCC) used to be given only to farmers will be extended to dairy, poultry, pig farming and others. The Centre will bear the cost of 2 per cent interest of the Mudra loan and 20 lakh youths of Assam who have availed the loan will be greatly benefitted, he said.

In Assam, one crore women have Jan Dhan account and Rs 300 will be deposited to them for three months since April, resulting in Rs 1500 crore coming to the state, Sarma said.

Three cylinders will be given free under the Ujala scheme, benefitting 35 lakh beneficiaries in the state, resulting in a relief of Rs 735 crore.

Besides receiving the old age pension, senior citizens will be given an ex-gratia of Rs 1,000 each, resulting in Rs 85 crore being reached to people, Sarma said.

The Centre will also provide Rs 153 crore to the state for the fight against COVID-19, he added.

(This story has not been edited by Business Standard staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

First Published: Tue, May 19 2020. 00:16 IST