Bhopal: Madhya Pradesh Chief Minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan on Tuesday said despite the state's economy being hit by the COVID-19 crisis, he had refused a proposal to cut salaries of government employees amid the pandemic.
Addressing a Republic Day function in Rewa after hoisting the national flag, Chouhan said the state's economy had collapsed during the coronavirus-induced lockdown and no money was deposited in the treasury for three months.
"In such a situation, I received a proposal (from officials) that salaries should be reduced due to the financial crunch, but I refused," he said.
Some arrears were stopped which will be paid as the economy stablises, he said.
Chouhan also thanked frontline and health care personnel who worked relentlessly in the time of the crisis.
"We didn't have arrangements to fight the coronavirus, but the government worked on a war-footing to control this pandemic," he said.
The government not only helped migrant workers who returned to the state, but also extended help to those travelling back to their native places via MP, he said.
On his government's drive against various mafias in MP, Chouhan said, "There are only a handful of people who use muscle power in various sectors and create trouble. Such mafias and criminals will be uprooted from the state." The state government has freed land costing around Rs 8,000 crore from such people, he said.
The government also took action against chit-fund companies and ensured that the victims get back their investments worth around Rs 680 crore, he said.
The state government has also increased the provision of sentence for food adulteration from six months to 10 years, the chief minister said.
Earlier, Chouhan inspected a parade by various security forces at a ground in Rewa.
In Bhopal, state Assembly's protem Speaker Rameshwar Sharma hoisted the national flag at Lal Parade Ground.
In Indore, state Water Resources Minister Tulsiram Silawat unfurled the triclolour in an officialceremony.
Various other state ministers and officials also hoisted the national flag and read out the CM's message in different districts.