Gujarat govt presents Rs 12241 crore surplus interim budget, no new tax levied

Gujarat govt presents Rs 12241 crore surplus interim budget, no new tax levied

Agency News

Gandhinagar, Feb 19: Deputy CM cum finance minister Nitin Patel on Tuesday presented Vote-on-Account for the year 2019-20 with a revenue surplus of Rs 12,241.40 crore.

No new tax has been levied or any hike in existing tax was made in it.

The estimated revenue receipt is Rs 1,54,885 crore, while the estimate for revenue expenditure was Rs 1,45,022 crore.

State tax revenue has been estimated at Rs 1,00,125 crore.

Mr Patel said in his address that Vote on Account proposal was for period of four months up to July 31, 2019.

A modified budget would be presented after the Lok Sabha polls.

He further said that Gujarat government's own tax income has increased to Rs 71,549 crore in the year 2017-18 from Rs 64,443 crores. The GSDP at Rs 3.15 lakh crore during 2017-18, has also seen a growth of 14 per cent over previous year.

During the year 2017-18, the per capita income of the State at current prices stood at Rs 1,71,652, which is 12.6 percent higher than previous year. The share of Gujarat's industrial output in national output stood at 16.8 per cent.

In a pro-poor measure, the State government also announced a one-time waiver scheme for electricity bills.

Mr Patel further said that the principal and interest and penalty amount of electricity bills of all eligible domestic power connections of Below Poverty Line (BPL) consumers in urban and rural areas will be waived. The total amount thus waived would be Rs 691 crore.

The per capita annual power consumption of electricity in the State was 1,424 units in 2007-08, which increased to 2,007 units in 2017-18 much above the national average per capita annual power consumption is 1,149 units, Mr Patel stated.

He informed that Gujarat's agriculture production growth was 12.11 per cent, and it contributed 7.3 per cent in the country's agriculture economy.

According to the minister, in four decades between 1960-2001, 6.94 lakh agriculture power connections were given, while since 2001 after BJP's coming to power, over 11 lakh agriculture power connections were given.

Mr Patel added that the government has declared 6,174 villages of 96 talukas as scarcity-hit. About 16.27 lakh farmers from these talukas have been paid Rs 1,557 crore as assistance. The government has introduced a special assistance package of Rs 2,285 crore for over 23 lakh farmers and cattle owners of 96 talukas of the state. As per the 19th Livestock Census, with rise of 15.36 per cent in livestock population, Gujarat ranks first in the country. In the past 15 years, the per capita availability of milk in the state improved by 243 grams per day and is now 564 grams per day.

Talking about the Narmada Dam project, Patel stated that that out of the total length of 71,748 km of Sardar Sarovar canal network, 84 percent or 60,427 km has been completed. And between 2001-2008, a total of Rs 51,786 crore was spent on the project, and a provision of Rs 6,945 crore has been made for the year 2019-20. Under this scheme, a total of 9,083 villages and 166 cities were supplied water.

He also announced that VAT subsidy on diesel for fishing boats will be increased from Rs 12 a litre to Rs 15.

The much-awaited Ahmedabad Metro rail Phase-I will have a commercial run on a 6.5 km route by March 2019.

For the year 2017-18, 311 million tonnes of goods were transported through various ports in Gujarat, which is 31 per cent of the total transportation in the country.

Reaffirming the State Government’s commitment to improve the well-being of all its citizens, he informed that the resources have been judiciously allocated across various sectors to accelerate Gujarat’s development strides.

The interim budget size for the financial year 2019-20 is Rs 1,91,817 crore. The provision covers all standing charges and expenditure on continuous items but excludes new items which will be covered in the Modified Budget, the minister further added.