Tamil Nadu is likely to suffer a revenue loss of 35,000 crore against the backdrop of the COVID-19 lockdown, Chief Minister Edappadi K. Palaniswami said, quoting an estimate prepared by the Finance Department.
Addressing the media in Salem, Mr. Palaniswami said the States GST revenue had reduced significantly during the lockdown, spanning a few days in March and the entire months of April and May.
The Finance Department has estimated the loss to be 35,000 crore. The State government is taking various measures to manage the loss without stalling development projects. There will be job opportunities for the public only if there are development projects, he said.
When asked if the Centre had sanctioned adequate funds to Tamil Nadu, he said, They are giving [funds] in instalments. But they havent given what we had asked for.
Noting that the entire world was facing an economic crisis, he said the Centre had promised to release GST dues to the States, and this was being done.
The Chief Minister rejected DMK president M.K. Stalins allegation that the State had failed to effectively combat COVID-19.
Reiterating that Tamil Nadu was leading the country in the implementation of COVID-19 preventive measures, he said, In India, Tamil Nadu leads in testing, and we have the highest number of labs in the country 67.
He appreciated the medical fraternity and allied workers engaged in countering the pandemic.
He said that the State was taking the right measures to control the spread of the disease, in accordance with the guidelines issued by the Centre and medical experts.
Defending the decision to hold SSLC board exams, he said that it was taken based on requests from the public.
On the water front, he said that the State was geared up for the summer. Desilting work had begun in the delta region to ensure supply of water to farmers in tail-end areas, he said.