SHIMLA: No new tax has been proposed in the the Rs 32,593.30-crore budget for 2016-17 presented by Chief Minister Virbhadra Singh in the Assembly today.
The budget included plethora of announcements for various sections including farmers, employees, industries, daily wagers, old age people and enhanced budgetary allocation for key sectors.
Chief minister Virbhadra singh, who also holds the finance portfolio, presented the budget for record 19th time and fourth time in a row and also made the longest ever budget speech lasting three hours and 25 minutes.
Total revenue receipts are estimated at Rs 26,270.37 crore, while revenue expenditure has been pegged at Rs 26,745.98 crore for 2016-17.
Expenditure on loans (advances) and public debt (repayments) including inter-state settlements will be of the order of Rs 428.19 crore and Rs 2,228.52 crore respectively.
Total expenditure will be Rs 32,593.30 crore and closing deficit would be around Rs 1,642.41 crore.
Chief minister announced hike in daily wages from Rs 180 to Rs 200, honorarium of part time water carriers from Rs 1700 to Rs 1900 per month, subsidy of Rs 75,000 to each house for BPL families of general categories through Mukhya Mantri Awas Yojna and hike in the remuneration to Home Guards from Rs 280 to Rs 380.
He also proposed hike in the social security pension from Rs 600 to Rs 650 per month and said under a new scheme of monthly pension for young widows, below 45 years of age, with child/children would be enhanced from Rs 600 to Rs 1200 per month.
Chief minister announced release of six per cent dearness allowance to employees and pensioners with effect from July 1, 2015 and five per cent interim relief from August 1,2016 ,putting additional burden of Rs 300 crore per annum.
He proposed increase in the marriage grant under Mukhya Mantri Kanya Daan Yojana from 25,000 to Rs 40,000, increase in pension of persons with 70 per cent disability and persons aged above 80 years from Rs 100 to Rs 1200 per month.
Singh said all sectors especially agriculture, irrigation and public health, horticulture had been kept in focus while preparing the budget and hiked the MLAs Local Area development Fund from Rs 75 lakh to Rs 1-crore and discretionary grant from Rs 2-lakh to Rs 5-lakh per annum.