New Delhi: Talking about his action plan on the Defence budget presented by Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman on February 1, Chief of Defence Staff General Bipin Rawat said that he will ensure that the defence makes optimum utilisation of the budget and his mandate will be to prioritise the procurement of equipment keeping in mind the balanced modernisation of the three services, adding, if they feel the need for more funds, they will take the requirements to the government.
Speaking on amount allotted for defence pension, Rawat said, ''I 'll give high priority to pension management through an increase in age of retirement progressively in the 3 services keeping in mind the operational requirements of different arms and services.''
The Central government has allotted a total Rs 30,42,230 crore for defence which is a hike by 6 percent from the previous year's budget amounting to Rs 3.19 lakh crore. The total defence budget accounts for 15.49 per cent of the total central government expenditure for the year 2020-21. Out of the amount allocated to defence budget this year Rs 1,33,825 crore has been provided for Defence Pension whereas the remaining Rs 3,37,553 crore is for defence alone.
The government in a statement said that the Defence budget 2020-21 is an increase of Rs 40,367.21 crore in the total Defence allocations (Rs 4,71,378 crore) including Defence Pension over the financial year 2019-20.
The statement read, '' The Union Budget for the financial year 2020-21, presented by Finance Minister Smt Nirmala Sitharaman in Parliament on February 01, 2020, envisaged a total outlay of Rs 30,42,230 crore. Out of this, Rs 3,37,553 crore has been allocated for Defence (excluding Defence Pension). For Defence Pension, an amount of Rs 1,33,825 crore has been provided in Budget Estimates 2020-21. There is an increase of Rs 40,367.21 crore in the total Defence allocations (Rs 4,71,378 crore) including Defence Pension over the financial year 2019-20. Total defence budget accounts for 15.49 per cent of the total central government expenditure for the year 2020-21.
The allocation of Rs 4,71,378 crore represents a growth of 9.37 per cent over Budget Estimates (Rs 4,31,010.79 crore) for the financial year 2019-20.
Out of Rs 3,37,553 crore allocated for the financial year 2020-21, Rs 2,18,998 crore is for the Revenue (Net) expenditure and Rs 1,18,555 crore is for capital expenditure for the Defence Services and the Organisations/Departments under Ministry of Defence. The amount of Rs 1,18,555 crore allocated for capital expenditure includes modernisation related expenditure.''
Budget 2020 saw Finance Minister Sitharaman speaking for over two hours and 40 minutes with her speech copy running into 45 pages. She spoke about three themes of the Union Budget - aspirational India, economic development and caring society.
(With ANI input)