IMPHAL | Jun 13: Deputy chief minister, Yumnam Joykumar, who was today demoted by the chief minister from ministerial post of finance in the wake of the financial crisis in the state, asserted that chief minister Nongthombam Biren should be held responsible for the overdraft.
A press release issued from the CM’s secretariat today informed that as an interim measure, the chief minister has vested the charge of the Department of Finance (including Taxation and Excise), Public Works and Power departments with himself.
The urgent cabinet meeting convened on Wednesday to take stock of the situation after the state faced overdraft authorised the chief minister to take all necessary disciplinary actions to imbibe a culture of financial prudence and propriety in key government departments, as informed by the release.
However, the deputy CM has strongly reacted to this release and said that the cabinet only discussed how the overdraft arises and how could it have been prevented.
Interacting with media persons today at his office chamber, he said that the said cabinet meeting never authorised the chief minister to take any such decision on his own nor discuss it.
This may be confirmed with any of the ministers present including L. Jayentakumar, V. Hangkhanlian, Th. Radheshyam, Th. Shyamkumar, etc., he added.
Joykumar further pointed out that on January 8, 2018; the CM insisted that any encashment permission or cheque drawal authority exceeding Rs 2 crore be carried out under the authority of the CM himself. He said that the CM remained a de facto finance minister since then.
The total overdraft amount is Rs 274.48 crore, which cannot be incurred through transactions of amount lesser than Rs 2 crore, which indicated that the CM was aware of the incurred amount.
As such, the deputy CM charged that the CM is responsible for the overdraft and demanded that if any action were to be taken up against any responsible person; action should be taken up against the CM.
Joykumar went on to say that finance commissioner and principal secretary, finance is also the staff officer of CM secretariat and alleged that the commissioner neglected from his duties in the finance department seriously. He said that the overdraft could have been prevented if the daily financial balance position sent by RBI is appraised to him and the CM, as instructed by him to the commissioner.
However, he appealed to the people not to be panicky as the matter will be solved once the central share of schemes and taxes are released in the later part of June.
The NPP minister also intimated that he would be meeting the party leaders tomorrow most likely at Delhi pertaining to his demotion from the finance minister.