Budget session likely from February fourth week

The budget session of the Legislative Assembly is likely to start in February fourth week and continue till the end of third week of March.

The government has lined up a series of programmes including the inauguration of statue of equality by Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Feb 5. Several dignitaries are scheduled to visit the venue at Muchintal in the next 10 days including President Ramnath Kovind on February 14.

The event would be followed by the famous tribal fair, Medaram Jatara in the third week and there is a major event inauguration of renovated Yadadri temple scheduled towards the end of March keeping the administration busy for almost a week. The session, accordingly, is likely to start after culmination of Medaram Jatara and conclude before preparations start for the inauguration of Yadadri temple in a befitting manner.

The budget session assumes significance as it will probably be the last full budget that will be presented by the current dispensation led by the Telangana Rashtra Samithi in its second tenure. With the term of the current elected Assembly scheduled to expire in December next year, the government is unlikely to present a full-fledged budget in March next year as it will have only nine months left for completing its full term.

The size of the budget too is likely to be bigger as compared with this year when the total outlay is pegged at ₹ 2.3 lakh crore as the government has to be make provision for Dalit Bandhu, the ambitious scheme aimed at financial empowerment of dalit families with a grant of ₹. 10 lakh each to selected families.

Chief Minister K. Chandrasekhar Rao has announced that the government will earmark ₹ 20,000 crore annually towards the scheme so that all the more than 17 lakh dalit families in the State are covered under the scheme in the coming seven years. The government is already incurring over ₹ 16,000 crore annually for the Rythu Bandhu scheme involving payment of ₹5,000 each an acre to farmers in two seasons.

The government will have to make provision for the enhanced expenditure on account of the revised pay scales implemented to the employees. Expenditure on salaries/wages, according to estimates, crossed ₹26,000 crore this fiscal while that for pensions is in close to ₹ 11,000 crore.

The government is liberally granting subsidies arising out of payment of social security pensions as well as for schemes like 24X7 free power to farmers. Expenditure on this account for the current year is estimated at ₹12,630 crore. This apart, the government had to put up with the burden on account of debt servicing which, for the current fiscal, is projected at ₹17,584.38 crore, according to the details available on the Comptroller and Auditor General of India’s website.

While Dalit Bandhu in itself is a major scheme involving huge outgo from the exchequer, the burden would be more if the government comes up with another scheme in the run-up to the elections. Finance department officials are already working overtime to mobilise revenues for the existing schemes with open market borrowings in the form of State Development Loans being the main option for the resources.

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Printable version | May 21, 2022 5:31:55 pm |