KOCHI: Washing its hands of, the state government on Wednesday submitted before the Kerala High Court that the government could not provide further financial assistance to the cash-strapped KSRTC.
The state-owned Corporation is finding it difficult to solve the financial crunch, including disbursing pension to the retired employees. The government made it clear that it is not in a position to shoulder any further liability of the KSRTC, especially in view of the financial constraints faced by the state.
The government pointed out that, during the last five years it paid an amount of `1263,13,59,966 as loan for meeting the working capital requirements of the KSRTC. The government is considering the proposal of the KSRTC MD to convert the loan amount into equities and also to write off the interest.
“KSRTC being a separate entity, has to find out resources on its own for meeting its liabilities and it cannot always depend on the government for its working capital requirements, including the liability to pay pension funds to its employees,” the affidavit stated.
Salamma Abraham, Deputy Secretary, Transport Department, submitted that the KSRTC is a public sector undertaking which has to manage its own affairs without depending on the government.
There are several other public sector undertakings which are also catering to the social obligations and public needs. The government cannot extend financial help merely on the ground that they are doing some social obligations and catering to public needs. “If such an attitude is taken, the government will not be able to provide funds for other developmental works requiring more public interest and needs,” state submitted.
The state pointed out that it was understood that the KSRTC has already initiated action for liquidating high interest rate loans by availing of loan from nationalised banks with lower interest. If such an action is accomplished, an amount of `15-20 crore can be saved.
The government is monitoring the implementation of revival package submitted by the KSRTC.