THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: While the state government is reeling under acute financial crisis following back to back floods, there is no reduction in the extravaganza. The state government has spent an amount of Rs 11.80 lakh as event management charges for the ‘Development Partners Conclave’ as part of the Rebuild Kerala Initiative held on 15/07/2019 at the Leela Raviz Kovalam, Thiruvananthapuram as per GO(Rt) No 323/2019/P&EA dated 11-07-2019.
The sanction was accorded to M/s Stark Communications Private Ltd, Thiruvananthapuram, the branding and advertisement company enlisted by the Tourism department. Additionally, an amount of Rs 3.06 lakh was spent for ballroom rent and refreshment charges for the conclave as per government records. Representatives of World Bank, Asian Development Bank, KFW Bankengruppe Germany, Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA) and several other international agencies were present at the conclave.
Stark Communications had submitted an estimate of Rs 12.27 lakh for the conduct of the event, and sought a release of Rs 9.20 lakhs only which was sanctioned by the Rebuild Kerala Initiative. However after discussions and further negotiations by the RKI officials with Stark communications the amount was reduced to Rs 11.80 lakhs.
The government order dated 5th September 2019 signed by the Revenue principal secretary and CEO Rebuild Kerala Initiative V Venu accorded ex-post factor sanction to RKI for availing event management service rendered by Stark Communications Pvt ltd. Interestingly, the state has been on a massive drive for frugal spending after the floods. It has also been endeavouring for maximum collection and mobilization of funds for the Chief Ministers Distress Relief Fund.