Finance Minister T.M. Thomas Isaac told the Assembly on Wednesday that the development expenditure of the State as a percentage of total expenditure was improving.
Replying to the debate on the Kerala Appropriation (Vote on Account) Bill, the Minister said the development expenditure was only 46.8 per cent of the total expenditure of Rs. 21,726 crore when the present government came to power. This had increased to 55.8 per cent in 2009-10. As per the Budget estimates for the coming year, the development expenditure would go up further to 58.6 per cent of the total expenditure of Rs. 39,789 crore. Thus the expenditure profile was moving in the right direction. Besides, the Gross State Domestic Product was growing.
Referring to the demand for early payment of salaries to government employees this month in connection with Easter and Vishu, Dr. Isaac said the salaries could be disbursed on March 22 and 23.
Disbursal later in the month would be difficult because of work connected to the end of the financial year.
He said the popular agitations against the Central government’s policies and implementation of the Budget proposals for welfare of the poor would pave the way for retention of power by the LDF in the following
Deputy Leader of the Congress G. Karthikeyan criticised the Finance Minister for concluding discussions on the Budget with a call for agitations. None had done so in the past.
Later, the House passed the Bill which seeks to authorise the withdrawal of Rs. 17,483 crore from Consolidated Fund of the State for services and demands pertaining to the first four months of the coming financial year.