Sitharaman presents Rs 1.18 lakh Cr budget for J&K in LS
STATE TIMES NEWS
New Delhi: Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman on Monday presented in the Lok Sabha a Rs 1.18 lakh crore budget for Jammu and Kashmir for the year 2023-24 with a thrust on providing housing in rural areas and water tap connections to 18.36 lakh households.
Union Minister of State for Finance Pankaj Chaudhary tabled the budget for the Union territory of Jammu and Kashmir.
The budget assures to double the UT’s GDP within five years and has themes of good governance; strengthening grass-root democracy; promoting sustainable agriculture; facilitating investment and industrial growth; employment generation; accelerated development and inclusive growth; and women empowerment and social inclusion.
Sitharaman said Kashmir is likely to be connected to the rest of the country through rail network by the end of 2023 and the government also plans to roll out light metro rail in Jammu and Srinagar during the next financial year.
“The total budget estimates for the fiscal is Rs 1,18,500 crore, of which developmental expenditure is of the order of Rs 41,491 crore,” Sitharaman said in the budget speech tabled in the Lok Sabha.
She said the expected revenue receipts are Rs 1,06,061 crore whereas revenue expenditure was expected to be Rs 77,009 crore, thereby making available revenue surplus for capital expenditure to the tune of Rs 29,052 crore.
“The tax/GDP ratio is projected at 8.82 per cent for 2023-24 which is higher than the previous year of 7.77 per cent,” Sitharaman said.
She said the debt/GDP ratio for 2023-24 was pegged as 49 per cent and the GDP growth for the Union territory for 2023-24 has been projected at Rs 2,30,727 crore which shows a growth of 10 per cent over the previous year.
All 18.36 lakh households of Jammu and Kashmir will have functional tap connections by 2023-24, Sitharaman said, adding that every household will be provided drinking water with minimum 55 litres per capita per day and of prescribed quality on regular, long term and sustainable basis.
The finance minister has allocated Rs 2,526.74 crore to agriculture and horticulture; Rs 2,097.53 crore to health and medical education; Rs 4,169.26 crore to rural department; Rs 1,964.90 crore to power sector; Rs 7,161 crore to Jal Shakti; Rs 2,928.04 crore to housing and urban development; Rs 1,521.87 crore to education; and Rs 4,062.87 crore to construction of roads and bridges.