Punjab seeks Rs 3,000 cr relief over Covid-19 pandemic

Chandigarh, April 21 (IANS) Punjab Chief Minister Amarinder Singh, here on Tuesday, demanded Rs 3,000 crore as interim compensation for April owing to the Covid-19 pandemic as well as release of the Rs 4,400 crore pending goods and services tax (GST) arrears.
In a letter to Union Home Minister Amit Shah, the Chief Minister also urged early release of Punjab’s GST arrears for four months to help the state overcome resource constraint.
Citing the lockdown that has substantial fiscal consequences for states, Singh said the central government should compensate Punjab for loss of revenue due to coronavirus.
Stating that the Rs 3,000 crore for April is an estimate, he said, “Detailed assessment of loss and requirement of funds for relief and rehabilitation will be submitted in due course”.
However, he said the Centre should provide interim assistance to not let the fight against Covid-19 weaken in any way.
The Chief Minister requested the Home Minister for early action, while assuring him of the state’s full support in the Centre’s efforts to overcome the crisis by effectively managing and containing the virus.

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