March 2020 News
Centre Presents Rs 1 Lakh Crore J&K Budget17 March 2020
New Delhi: The Centre on Tuesday presented Rs 1-lakh crore Budget for Jammu and Kashmir for the year 2020-21 and said the highest ever allocations reflect its commitment to make the Union Territory a model of development. The government also presented a separate expenditure plan of Rs 55,317.81 crore for the last five months of the current fiscal. The Budget for 2019-20 and 2020-21, laid by Minister of State for Finance Anurag Singh Thakur in both Houses of Parliament, estimates capital expenditure at Rs 23,910.95 crore and revenue expenditure Rs 31,406.86 crore. He also tabled the Supplementary Demands for Grants for 2019-20 for the erstwhile state for authorising payment and appropriation of Rs 208.70 crore from and out of the Consolidated Fund of the State for the period of seven months from April, 2019 to October 30, 2019. The budgetary proposals and demand for grants are likely to come up for vote in Lok Sabha on Wednesday. Jammu and Kashmir was made a union territory with effect from October 31, 2019. The original grant for the financial year 2019-20 was Rs 88,911 crore, said Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman in the speech laid in the both Houses of Parliament. She informed that the budget for 2020-21 for J&K shall cross Rs 1 lakh crore mark for the first time, an indicator of commitment to make J&K a model of development. 'This is the highest ever budget envisaged for Jammu and Kashmir. The total budget estimates for the fiscal is Rs 1,01,428 crore, of which developmental expenditure is of the order of Rs 38,764 crore, an increase of 27 per cent,' she said. She expressed hope to achieve GSDP growth of 11 per cent, making the UT one of the fastest growing UTs-States. 'The capital component of the budget has increased substantially and the expected revenue receipts are Rs 91,100 crore whereas revenue expenditure is expected to be Rs 62,664 crore thereby making available revenue surplus for capital expenditure to the tune of Rs 28,436 crore,' she added. The Capital Receipts are projected at Rs 10,329 crore and Capital Expenditure is expected to the tune of Rs 38,764 crore which is 27 per cent higher than previous years budget. With regard to Union territory of Ladakh carved out from the erstwhile state of Jammu & Kashmir, the total budget estimates for last 5 months has been pegged at Rs 5,754 crore. Of this, she said, capital expenditure would be Rs 4,618.35 crore and revenue expenditure would be Rs 1,135.65 crore. GSDP for the year 2020-21 has been projected at Rs 2,01,054 crore which shows a growth of 11 per cent over previous year, she said. Noting that J&K has a rich source of cultural heritage sites, she said, Rs 100 crore has been earmarked for preservation of this during 2020-21. Tourism infrastructure worth Rs 1,000 crore shall also be taken up under the Prime Minister's Development Programme to be spent for various projects, she said. For rural development an allocation of Rs 5,284 crore has been made for the year 2020-21, which is Rs 1,951 crore more than the previous years' budget allocation, she said. The government has made an allocation of Rs 2,392 crore, which is Rs 1,000 crore more than the previous year's budget allocation for School and Higher Education Sector. For filling up of 50,000 vacant posts there is an allocation of Rs 2,000 crore for 2020-21, she said, adding an allocation of Rs 1,268 crore has been made for health and medical education. In a bid to improve industrial infrastructure, she said, an allocation of about Rs 494 crore has been made as against Rs 227 crore in the current fiscal. 'With the abrogation of Article 370 and Re-organisation of State into Union Territory, the PaK and West Pakistan Refugees have qualified for citizenship rights which were denied to them since 1947,' she said. They will now get all the rights due to every citizen of this country, she said, adding the government shall take care of their rehabilitation needs. During the course of year from April-October, she said, an amount of Rs 208.70 crore had been withdrawn in excess of grant under the relevant demand out of the Consolidated Fund of the erstwhile State to defray expenses on services and purposes required during the period. This had been largely necessitated due to expenses related to local body elections and security related expenditure, she added. With regard to the total receipts, she said, Rs 40,498 crore are revenue receipts, Rs 5,794 crore are in the form of borrowings and Rs 9,025.81 crore are Ways & Means Advances. The own revenues are estimated to be Rs 11,326 crore with Rs 5,462 crore as the share of the Union Territory in central taxes. In addition to this, Rs 23,710 crore are to flow as other central transfers, she added. With regard to Direct Benefit Transfer (DBT), Sitharaman said Rs 1,705 crore has been disbursed through this to 45 lakh beneficiaries and 60000 new pension cases shall be covered through DBT Scheme. 'We intend to achieve 100 per cent coverage under individual beneficiary schemes, particularly under various scholarship schemes,' she said.