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Maharashtra presents Rs 15,374 cr revenue deficit budget

sudhir mungantiwarMaharashtra Finance Minister Sudhir Mungantiwar  presented the budget for 2018-19 which has an estimated revenue deficit of Rs 15,374 crore and focuses on improving infrastructure, boosting agriculture and irrigation facilities and generating employment. The budget, presented by Mungantiwar in the Assembly, has an estimated revenue deficit of Rs 15,374 crore for the next fiscal in Maharashtra which aims to become a USD 1 trillion economy by 2025 by stepping up growth in sectors like agriculture, textiles, tourism and start-ups. The budget, having a projected revenue mobilisation of Rs 2.86 lakh crore against a revenue expenditure of Rs 3.01 lakh crore, has earmarked Rs 10,828 crore for road development and Rs 7,235 crore on setting up power infrastructure.” Prime Minister Narendra Modi has declared that the Indian economy should expand to USD 5 trillion by 2025.

We envision the share of Maharashtra in the national economy to be USD 1 trillion (by 2025),” Mungantiwar said, delivering his fourth budget speech.” This will be achieved by increasing growth in sectors like agriculture, textiles, tourism, start-ups and by investing in industry with requisite skill development support,” he added. He said the planned expenditure for 2018-19 has increased by 23.08 per cent, or Rs 17,816 crore, to Rs 95,000 crore from Rs 77,184 crore in 2017-18.”I shall try to minimise the deficit by reducing avoidable expenditure and effective recovery of revenue.” The government has made a provision of Rs 10,828 crore for road development and planned to spend Rs 7,235 crore on setting up power infrastructure. It has also allocated Rs 9,949 crore for the social justice department. The minister said the state has made continuous efforts to increase its investment in the agricultural sector and announced allocation of Rs 8,233 crore for the water resources department. Mungantiwar announced that the state plans to complete at least 50 irrigation projects in the next fiscal. The budget has further allocated Rs 1,500 crore for Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis’ flagship scheme for water conservation ‘Jalyukta Shivar Abhiyan’.

The scheme seeks to make Maharashtra a drought-free state by improving irrigation facilities and rejuvenating old water bodies. The state has allocated Rs 1,000 crore for incentives to industries in electricity rates in backward regions of Marathwada and Vidarbha. The finance minister announced Rs 926 crore as power subsidies to D and D+ category industries in northern Maharashtra, Marathwada and Vidarbha. He announced an outlay of Rs 2,650 for incentives for industrial development. Mungantiwar said the number of taxpayers, post the implementation of Goods and Services Tax (GST) from July 1, 2017, has increased significantly by 5.32 lakh to 13.62 lakh. At the end of February, the revenue collected under GST stood at Rs 45,886 crore. He said post GST implementation, the government had to bear a financial burden of nearly Rs 11,804 crore in the form of compensation disbursed to the BrihanMumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) and other civic bodies, which lost revenues due to scrapping of octroi and local body taxes collected by them. While Rs 5,826 crore was provided as compensation to the BMC, India’s largest civic body, the rest was disbursed to other local municipal bodies.

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