J&K government seeks to cut down administration costs
The Jammu and Kashmir government has rolled out various austerity measures to “promote financial discipline” in the administration and has banned holding official meetings and conferences in hotels.”Utmost economy shall be observed in organising conference, seminars, workshops by the government departments and only such conferences, seminars, workshops, etc, which are absolutely essential, should be held,” according to a circular issued by principal secretary, Finance, Navin Kumar Choudhary.
Holding of exhibitions, fairs, seminars and conferences outside the state should be strongly discouraged except in the case of exhibition for tourism or handicrafts promotion.
“There will be ban on holding meetings and conferences at private hotels and government buildings/premises would be instead utilised for the same,” the circular said.According to the circular, the travel expenditure should be regulated so as to ensure that each department remains within the allocated budget for the same.
“Re-appropriation /augmentation proposals on this account will not be entertained, the circular said, adding however, that the purchase of new vehicles to meet the operational requirement is permitted, “but only against condemnation as a replacement measure and with prior concurrence of the Finance Department .
The Finance department has directed the officers to travel economy class and purchase cheapest air tickets.
“The state government officers should travel only by economy class within the country regardless of entitlement and in all cases of air travel, the lowest air fare ticket available for entitled class is to be purchased / procured, the circular said.
It directed using video-conferencing facility effectively and to avoid travelling, to the extent possible, for the purpose of attending meetings.
Choudhary also directed that no fresh financial commitments be made on items which are not provided for in the approved budget.