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Over Rs 7,000 crore deficit budget for Andhra Pradesh

A revenue deficit of over Rs 7,000 crore has been projected in Andhra Pradesh's maiden full-fledged budget for 2015-16, which was presented in the state Assembly on Thursday with focus both on welfare and development.



Hyderabad: A revenue deficit of over Rs 7,000 crore has been projected in Andhra Pradesh's maiden full-fledged budget for 2015-16, which was presented in the state Assembly on Thursday with focus both on welfare and development.

Finance Minister Y Ramakrishnudu has in his first budget post reorganisation proposed an expenditure of Rs 1,13,049 crore, comprising non-plan expenditure of Rs.78,637 crore and plan expenditure of Rs 34,412 crore.

He told the Assembly that the estimated revenue deficit is Rs 7,300 crore and fiscal deficit is estimated at Rs 17,584 crore.

This is the first full-fledged budget of Andhra Pradesh after separate Telangana state was carved out in June last year.

Ramakrishnudu had presented Rs 1.11 lakh crore interim budget last August for 2014-15.

Criticising the bifurcation, he reiterated that the provisions made in the AP Reorganisation Act 2014 for the development of the state of Andhra Pradesh signify tokenism and they may not in any way compensate the loss of opportunity for the people due to the division of the state.

He said the united Andhra Pradesh was a revenue surplus state but the division made the residuary state of Andhra Pradesh a huge revenue deficit state. 

"Our debt burden and fiscal deficit will continue to increase as we keep borrowing to meet revenue expenditure. We had requested 14th Finance Commission to provide us with a grant of Rs 1,00,213 crore for capital construction and Rs 41,253 crore for other critical infrastructure requirements. The 14th Finance Commission has provided only Rs 22,113 crore as revenue deficit grant and Rs 1,823 crore towards disaster management."

The minister said the government would explore possibilities of increasing non-tax revenues and it had already engaged experts for this purpose. It is also studying the excise policy of Tamil Nadu. 

"We are engaging ourselves in the process of attracting private investments into projects for improving productive capital expenditure," he said.

Ramakrishnudu also assured the House the government would not spare any effort in doing effective follow-up with the central government to ensure that the promises made at the time of bifurcation and the entitlements contained in the Reorganisation Act are realised in full.

Stating that the state is poised to achieve a higher growth trajectory in the coming years, he pointed out that the state, as per the advance estimates, the state recorded a growth of 7.21 percent during 2014-15. 

For development of new state capital near Vijayawada, the budget has allocated Rs 3,168 crore.

He informed the assembly that the total land required for the capital is being secured by obtaining consent from the land owners of capital city consisting of about 33,252 acres out of whom about 87 percent have given consent for pooling their land.

The finance minister also allocated Rs 300 crore for metro rail projects for Visakhapatnam and Vijayawada.

The state has allocated Rs 5,258 crore for irrigation sector. A separate budget for agriculture would be presented on Friday.

The allocations under health sector have been increased from 3.92 percent of the total budget to 5.07.

The government has provided Rs 8,213 crore for rural development, Rs 3,049 crore for higher education, Rs 3,231 crore for welfare of backward classes, Rs 5,878 crore for welfare of scheduled castes, Rs 993 crore for welfare of scheduled tribes, Rs 1,080 crore for women and child welfare and Rs 993 crore for minority welfare.

From Zee News

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