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Mumbai: Cash-strapped BEST seeks financial assistance from BMC

BEST, in its budget for 2020-21 and 2021-22, had requested financial assistance from the civic body. The budget of BEST is tabled before the civic standing committee as well as at the general body meeting for final approval.

By: Express News Service | Mumbai |
January 19, 2022 10:24:01 pm
A proposal stated that Rs 1,887.83 crore was required for repaying various loans taken by the administration. (File)

Citing financial crisis, the Brihanmumbai Electricity Supply and Transport (BEST) has sought financial aid of Rs 6650.31 crore from the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) for capital expenditure as well as smooth operation of administration.

Earlier, BEST, in its budget for 2020-21 and 2021-22, had requested financial assistance from the civic body. The budget of BEST is tabled before the civic standing committee as well as at the general body meeting for final approval.

A proposal stated that Rs 1,887.83 crore was required for repaying various loans taken by the administration. Along with this, Rs 3,845.58 crore for the establishment’s expenditure, including salary, pension, provident funds of employees, and Rs 2,804.73 crore for procurement of new buses and their operation will be needed. In all, BEST requires Rs 6,650.31 crore for running the institution efficiently.

According to officials from BMC, a proposal of information of financial help will be tabled before the standing committee meeting on Friday.

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However, the civic administration has maintained that the BMC’s final decision in the regard will be announced only in the civic body’s budget of 2022-23, likely to be presented in the first week of February.

“The proposal could be part of budget statement. The final call on providing help for BEST will be announced in the municipal commissioner’s speech in February,” said a senior official from the BMC.

Additional Municipal Commissioner P Velrasu said that BMC will reveal the amount of help it will shell out during the budget.

Over the last six years, the civic body had given Rs 3,219.51 crore to BEST as financial assistance. In 2019-20, BEST got Rs 2,150.03 crore in help. In 2021-22, BMC approved Rs 750 crore as aid apart from Rs 406 crore as loan with minimal interest rates.

 

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