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Funds to flow freely for 2010

Chief Minister Shiela Dikshit definitely had a reason to cheer after the Group of Ministers? meeting on the 2010 Commonwealth Games on Friday.

india Updated: May 13, 2006 01:36 IST

Chief Minister Shiela Dikshit definitely had a reason to cheer after the Group of Ministers’ (GoM) meeting on the 2010 Commonwealth Games on Friday.

Finance Minister P Chidambaram's has given Dikshit complete assurance that money will not be an obstacle for transforming Delhi into a world-class city for the 2010.

"We are not a poor country. Money will not prevent us from holding games of international standards," Chidambaram reportedly told the GoM on Friday.

Earlier, Youth Affairs Minister Mani Shankar Aiyar had asked the Delhi Government to reduce its fund requirement from Rs 1,200 crore to Rs 500 crore. The money is required for building flyovers, roads and improve infrastructure for the Games.

Aiyar had reportedly stated that the Delhi government's financial estimate was on the higher side and could not be met from the budget of his ministry.

He had asked Delhi government on Wednesday to submit a revised proposal to the GoM as per the reduced allocation.

Dikshit had reportedly opposed downsizing of the allocation and said it would adversely impact the overall organisation of the Games. Sources say, different aspects of downsizing were discussed before Chidambaram gave his assurance.

The allocation to the Delhi Development Authority for improving the stadium was reduced from Rs 501 crore to Rs 490 crore, whereas the Games organising committee's allocation was reduced by about Rs 50 crore.

Sources, however, say that the organising committee has been allowed to raise money from the market.

"The committee has assured a revenue neutral model where in the money required for organising the games will be returned after the games are over," a source said.

For others, raising money from the market has been ruled out.

Chidambaram's has asked the Delhi government and the DDA to put forth proposals for infrastructure improvement projects and get it cleared from the respective Expenditure Finance Committee (EFC).

First Published: May 13, 2006 01:36 IST