By: V. V. Balakrishna
In all likelihood, the budget session of the state Assembly will commence after January 26.
Finance minister E Rajender will present the Budget in February itself, without waiting for the presentation of Union Budget, which is the normal practice in the past.
The usual practice is that state budget is presented only after the Union Budget presentation. However, the state government now prefer to have its budget before the Union budget.
According to sources, the exercise on allocation of plan and non-plan funds for various departments is going on and the finance department is obtaining details from all the departments on their requirements so that the budget would be made ready very well before the commencement of the budget session. Exercise for the budget for the forthcoming year has already begun with the issue of guidelines to various departments.
To expedite various flagship programmes and developmental and welfare measures of the state government like construction of double bedroom houses, Mission Kakatiya, drinking water supply project, irrigation and power projects, agriculture related schemes, supply of fertilisers and seeds etc, the government wants to have the allocations made at the earliest and go for budget presentation in February.
This would enable the departments to plan for next (2016-17) year from March itself. It is also learnt that actual requirement of plan and non-plan allocations of each and every department are closely monitored by all concerned to give a final touch.
Normally, the state budget session commences after February and budget would be presented in March. This is to wait for the outcome of the Union budget to know the allocations under Centrally Sponsored Schemes (CSS) for the states. However, the Central government reduced several CSSs and categorised them into three. In the first category, the pattern of certain schemes were not changed.
In the second category, the Centre and the states will bear the expenditure on 60:40 ratio and under third category schemes, the Centre and the state will bear the expenses on 50:50 ratio.
“We know how much money will come for what scheme now. So there is no need to wait for the outcome of the Union Budget,” a senior official in the finance department told.
The sources further added that the growth of country’s economy is put at 7.5 per cent. By the time February, the revised estimates of the Union government would be known. So, that we can have an idea on the likely revenues.
The finance department has already commenced the exercise for the budget session and decided to cut the non-plan expenditure to increase the size of plan expenditure to some extent.
Source: The New Indian Express