As a special dispensation, Centre has released in advance over 8873 crore rupees for State Disaster Response Fund (SDRF) to all the States. The States can use up to 50 percent of the released amount for COVID-19 containment measures, that include meeting the cost of oxygen generation and storage plants in hospitals, ventilators, strengthening ambulance services, COVID-19 hospitals, thermal scanners, personal protective equipment, testing laboratories and testing kits.
The Finance Ministry has released the amount ahead of the normal schedule of the 1st instalment of SDRF, which is generally released in the month of June. However, in relaxation of the normal procedure, not only the release of SDRF has been advanced, the amount has also been released without waiting for the utilization certificate.
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