Odisha cannot escape the effects of recession, said Finance Minister Prasanna Acharya. He further said that it was a million dollar question as on how the economy of the country has become a concern when an economist like Manmohan Singh is at the helm of affairs.
Addressing a function organised by Sambalpur Chamber of Commerce and Industry and Odisha Byabasayee Mahasangh here on Sunday, the Finance Minister termed himself as a novice in the field of finance.
He urged the businessmen to teach him the nuances of finance to help him bail the State out from financial problems. On the global recession, he said Odisha cannot be an exception.
“The State Government did not have money to pay salary to its employees when BJD took the reins in 2000 and overdraft was the order of the day,” Acharya
said, adding that development of the State got short-shrift.
“However, things have changed and the State Government has managed to overcome the situation by taking politically risky decisions. There has been no overdraft and the State Government is able to manage its own affairs,” he said. Acharya disclosed that the State Government has a loan of ` 40,000 crore and repayment has begun in the last one year. Admitting that Finance Department is difficult for him to handle, Acharya said he thought otherwise when he was in charge of the Health Department and had desired to moved out of the department. “But I have taken this new job as a challenge,” he quipped.