GUWAHATI: Reacting sharply to State Finance Minister Himanta Biswa Sarma's announcement regarding doling out funds to religious institutions, the Assam State Committee of the CPI(M) has appealed to the State government to spend these funds from the State exchequer for the construction of COVID hospitals and provincialization of schools.
In a statement issued to the media, State CPI(M) secretary Deven Bhattacharya said, "Finance Minister Himanta Biswa Sarma told the media yesterday that due to scarcity of funds the government would not be able to spend money for COVID patients like before. He said that the patients would have to bear the cost of diagnosis of their disease and treatment. In provincialization of schools in the State, the government isn't ready to meet the assurance it gave to the people of the State. Even after the approval from the State Selection Committee, 105 higher secondary schools, 2295 upper primary schools and 2696 lower primary schools have been kept outside the purview of provincialization on the pretext of review. The Minister said that Rs 6,000 crore loan would have to be taken to tide over the fund crunch. In such a situation, funds from the State exchequer should be spent for COVID hospitals and school provincialization instead doling them out for naamghar, mandir, masjid, church etc. The government should spend funds for provincialization of all affiliated schools and adopt austerity measures to cut unnecessary cost of the government.