AP cabinet nods for ordinance to vote on account budget
Amaravati: As expected, the cabinet cleared a proposal to promulgate an Ordinance authorising the government to spend public money for three months without passing the Budget in the Assembly, on Friday at Secretariat. Since the State is suffering from the pandemic Coronavirus, the government has differed to conduct the Assembly Budget session to pass Vote on Account and the same is bringing as Ordinance.
The social distancing observed at the Cabinet meeting also. All the ministers sat with a distance of at least one meter and no one touched each other during the entire meeting.
Cabinet also constituted a five-member cabinet subcommittee to monitor day to day developments related to pandemic coronavirus in the state.
The Ordinance is for a vote on account budget for the three-month period up to June 30 for all Departmental expenses. Chief Minister YS Jagan Mohan Reddy held the cabinet meeting and discussed in detail the measures to contain the spread of the virus.
Speaking to the media after the cabinet meeting, I & PR Minister Perni Venkataramaiah (Nani) told the media that the cabinet has approved the Ordinance for drawing money for the expenses of the State. Once it gets the Governor's nod, the details would be revealed, he added. Jagan held extensive discussions on the medical facilities and strengthening the medicare system and has put in place all measures with a high-level monitoring system.
To get state-level feedback a taskforce with five ministers, 10 senior IAS officers and four officials from CMO will be formed to coordinate with district-level teams of ministers and officers, he said.
Four hospitals one each at Vijayawada, Visakhapatnam, Tirupati and Nellore are now converted into dedicated super speciality Covid-19 hospitals while 100 bedded isolation centres are in place at the constituency level and 200-bed isolation centres at the district level.
About 400 ventilators are in place and PPEs (Personal Protection Equipment) surgical masks for patient attendants. About 53,000 N95 masks are available. The order was placed for more equipment which will be delivered in a couple of days.
People should take the lockdown seriously and help the government in fighting the invisible enemy. It is very sad to see that students and others from our state are stranded at other places but the helplessness of the situation prompts us to say that they have to stay wherever they are or cross the border and be quarantined for 14 days.
TDP president N Chandrababu Naidu was trying to play politics even at this hour of crisis by asking how did the number of returnees inflate from 13,000 to 28,000. During the first survey held on March 10, the figure was 13,000 and the recent survey concluded revealed the higher figure as there was a rush of passengers both domestic and foreign with the closure of airports and national lockdown.
He also appealed to the media not to blow the stories of state borders and create panic but cooperate with the government.