Goa Raj Bhavan plan imprudent amid pandemic: Governor
Panaji, Aug 1 : The Goa Raj Bhavan, here on Saturday, described the state government's plan for a new complex as "irrational and imprudent", especially at a time when the state exchequer was under strain due to the Covid-19 pandemic.
"The Governor believes at a time when the state is battling Covid-19 and reeling under financial crises, the idea to construct a new Raj Bhavan is irrational and imprudent. The Governor feels any new capital work would entail unnecessary financial burden on the state exchequer thereby exacerbating the economic distress of the state," the Raj Bhavan said in a statement.
The Governor in his letter to the Chief Minister had clarified that his requirement for functioning as the Governor was limited and he didn't require any new building, it said.
The statement has come a week after the state cabinet led by Chief Minister Pramod Sawant cleared a proposal for a new Raj Bhavan complex, claiming the present building had been declared a heritage structure by the Archaeological Survey of India.
The Chief Minister's announcement on July 24 triggered criticism by the Opposition as well as in the media, which said the capital-intensive project was being envisioned at the cost of expenses meant for management of the pandemic.
"A lot of negativities and controversies are being generated on the matter at various media platforms," the Raj Bhavan said.
In a letter to Sawant, Governor Satya Pal Malik had said the project could be deferred until the state's financial condition improved, it added. "The project should be taken up only when the finances of state improves and that too within the premises of the Raj Bhavan only," it said.
Leader of Opposition Digambar Kamat has welcomed the Raj Bahvan's decision to stall the project.
"It's the responsibility of the government to set its priorities. Giving basic comforts to the needy must top the agenda of every effective administration. Welcome decision of Governor of Goa to keep the new Raj Bhavan project on hold. Economic Revival Plan is (the) need of the hour," Kamat tweeted.
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