Deccan Chronicle

Chandrababu Naidu government presents first Budget, AP banking on centre

Deccan Chronicle | DC Correspondent

Published on: March 13, 2015 | Updated on: Invalid date

Andhra Pradesh Budget is less than Telangana’s Rs 1.15 lakh crore Budget

Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister N. Chandrababu Naidu in the AP Assembly as finance minister Yanamala Ramakrishnudu presents the state Budget in Hyderabad on Thursday (Photo: PTI)

Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister N. Chandrababu Naidu in the AP Assembly as finance minister Yanamala Ramakrishnudu presents the state Budget in Hyderabad on Thursday (Photo: PTI)

Hyderabad: The Andhra Pradesh government on Thursday presented its first full-fledged Budget post the bifurcation with an outlay of Rs 1.13 lakh crore. The AP Budget also projected a revenue deficit of Rs 7,300 crore and fiscal deficit of Rs 17,584 crore.

The AP Budget is less than Telangana State’s Rs 1.15 lakh crore Budget that was presented on Wednesday. A separate Budget will be presented by the AP government for agriculture and allied sectors on Friday, but its outlay was included in the overall Budget presented on Thursday. The interim Budget in August last year for Rs 1.11 lakh crore was for the 2014-15 financial year.

Finance minister Yanamala Ramakrishnudu did not impose any new or additional taxes. The Budget focuses on poverty alleviation, agriculture and infrastructure development, he said. However, he left out no efforts to convince the Centre through the Budget that AP was in a financial crisis and needed help.

While projecting a non-plan expenditure of Rs 78,637 crore and plan expenditure of Rs 34,412 crore, the finance minister did not elaborate on ways and means of raising revenues to compensate even the fiscal deficit of Rs 17,584 crore. He, however, said that the Budget was a step forward towards transforming the state into "Swarnandhrapradesh".

Stating that the Budget was aimed at exploring possibilities of increasing non-tax revenue from sectors such as mines and minerals, he said it had been prepared in a pragmatic manner to reflect the ground reality in AP.

Mr Ramakrishnudu reiterated that the provisions made in the AP Reorganisation Act, 2014, for the development of the state were only token ones and they may not compensate the loss of opportunity due to the division.

He said undivided AP was a revenue surplus state, but the division had made the AP a revenue deficit state. "Our debt burden and fiscal deficit will continue to increase as we keep borrowing to meet revenue expenditures. We had requested the 14th Finance Commission to grant us Rs 1,00,213 crore for capital construction and Rs 41,253 crore for other critical infrastructure requirements. But the Commission provided only Rs 22,113 crore as revenue deficit grant and Rs 1,823 crore towards disaster management," he said.

The state is studying the excise policy of Tamil Nadu. Mr Ramakrishnudu assured the House that the state would not spare any effort to follow up with the Centre to ensure that the promises made at the time of the bifurcation and the entitlements in the AP Act were realised.

He said the state was poised to achieve a higher growth trajectory in the coming years, and pointed out that as per advance estimates growth was 7.21 per cent during 2014-15.

The Polavaram project was allotted Rs 1,000 crore. Metro projects in Visakhapatnam and Vijayawada got Rs 300 crore.

CM hopes to convince Centre

Chief Minister N. Chandrababu Naidu will write a letter to the Centre to come to the rescue of Andhra Pradesh as the Budget presented on Thursday reflected the financial crisis in the state.

Mr Naidu will place the AP Budget and present a strong case for Central funding and special category status to AP. The finance minister, when asked, said that AP’s Budget is Rs 2,000 crore less than the TS Budget, despite being geographically larger. He said this is because AP does not have as many revenue sources as TS. He said the deficit will continue till 2019-20, if the Centre does not help.

Latest News
Most Popular