In keeping with the austerity season, the Congress government in Rajasthan announced measures on Wednesday to check wasteful spending — mainly banning foreign trips and making economy class travel mandatory.
The government expects that the measures will result in an annual saving of Rs 354 crore (Rs 3.54 billion), or 10 per cent of its 2009-10 non-plan expenditure — roughly, part of the total government spending that does not go into development projects.
Chief minister Ashok Gehlot said the decision followed the drought-like conditions in many parts of the state and the global recession.
The order, covering all state units, companies, universities and state-aided institutions, will be in place till June 30 next year till the onset of the monsoon next year.
All government offices will also have to bring down electricity bills by 10 per cent and curtail building new offices and buying new equipment.
What’s more, ministers and officials will be allowed to travel freely only to Delhi. To visit other states, they will have to explain the reasons.
Even for official dinners, the state finance department’s nod will be required. The government will also launch a special drive to recover dues.