Telangana government for realistic 2020-21 Budget

CM identifies areas for mobilisation of resources

The Budget preparation exercise has reached the final phase with the Finance department completing its round of meetings with all departments.

On Thursday, Chief Minister K. Chandrasekhar Rao held a review meeting on the proposed Budget for 2020-21 to give a final direction in the wake of economic slowdown prevailing in the country. The Union Budget too had not held out any promise for the State. The hopes of the State, which had made umpteen representations over the last few years for grant of at least the funds recommended by the NITI Aayog, have been once again dashed by the Union Budget.

At a marathon meeting that lasted almost till midnight with Finance Minister T. Harish Rao, MA & UD Minister K. T. Ramarao and Finance department and CMO officials, Mr. Chandrasekhar Rao had a detailed discussion on the financial policy to be implemented for the coming financial year.

Given the resource crunch, he mainly focused on what schemes and programmes should get the priority in the Budget to be presented in the second week of March, allocations for different sectors and what the government’s priorities should be. He also held deliberations on how to increase State’s own revenue.

The Chief Minister is firm that the Budget expenditure for 2020-21 should reflect reality on the lines of the budget outlay for 2019-20. The State had presented ₹1.36 lakh crore expenditure for the current fiscal. An amount of ₹10,000 crore was proposed to be mobilised through auction of land with an indication that if it was realised, the amount would be spent on important programmes and projects. However, the land auction had not materialised in the current fiscal owing to a petition pending in the court.

With tax revenue improving in the last two months, the current fiscal is expected to end with an estimated expenditure of ₹1.36 lakh crore or may fall short of ₹ 1,000 crore to ₹.2,000 crore.

For additional resource mobilisation, the State would be looking at the mining sector , especially sand and granite mining, and ensure that the government earned the bulk of revenue. The focus hereafter would be on streamlining the process and ensuring that the government got maximum revenue. The Chief Minister made it clear that the mining should benefit the government and the end-user. The contractor would get the percentage due to him legally, according to sources.

Land value

Another proposal would be to revise the market value of lands and reduce the gap between government price and actual market price. The government may also increase property tax and trade licence fee and go for monetisation of its lands judiciously. Equal focus would be on plugging leakages in tax collection and checking corruption on the part of government employees.

The proposed new Revenue Act and the new Act for the Greater Hyderabad Municipal Corporation would not be passed in the Budget session. A separate session would be convened at an appropriate time, sources said.

Given the fall in revenue growth rate, the State would not be making provisions for unemployment dole, or bringing down age limit to 57 years for social security pensions and other promises in next Budget. It would concentrate on effective implementation of existing schemes and programmes. It would encourage tourism sector, especially along the Godavari river front with Kaleshwaram and several other barrages to boost employment and revenue. It is also confident that with irrigation projects and filling of tanks, rural employment opportunities in agriculture and allied sectors would improve pushing the State’s GDP.

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Printable version | Jul 10, 2020 3:43:14 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/cities/Hyderabad/ts-government-for-realistic-2020-21-budget/article30951588.ece

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