DEHRADUN: Fiscal deficit of Uttarakhand budget has spiked over 1000 per cent since the financial year 2001-02 tumbling from Rs 612 Crore to Rs 6798.16 Crore in the financial year 2019-20.
The reasons behind such an exponential increase in the deficit is being termed as state government's lackadaisical approach towards working to increase revenue and manage expenditures of the state government, said economists.
BK Joshi, Dehradun based economist commenting on the issue said, "Increasing fiscal deficit dents the development work. It also increases inflation resulting in the decline of purchasing power of the people hence, slowing down the growth."
The state government will present a budget of over Rs 53000 Crore for an economy of the state worth over Rs 2.5 lakh Crore.
The budget session of Uttarakhand state assembly is to begin on March 3 for five days in Gairsain, Chamoli district.
Sudhakar Bhatt, an economic expert from Dehradun who has been following the budget since first budget of Uttarakhand was tabled said, "State government has liabilities such as spending 35-40% in salaries, allowances and related expenses while rest is used up to complete routine development work. This leaves little room for anything new or innovative. The only way to do something in the state is to raise money through various channels in form of debt. This debt comes with compound I which needs to be paid within the stipulated time period. The cycle continues and fiscal deficit keeps increasing."
After the formation of Uttarakhand in year 2000, first budget was presented in March 2001 for financial year 2001-02.
Fiscal deficit for financial year 2001-02 was Rs 612 Crore which increased to Rs 888 for fiscal year 2002-03 followed by Rs 1407.12 Crore in 2003-04, Rs 2171.43 Crore in FY 2004-05.
In the financial year 2005-06, fiscal deficit stood Rs 1878.22 Crore followed by Rs Rs 885.77 Crore in FY 2006-07.
Next fiscal year in 2007-08, the deficit again jumped to Rs 1742.40 Crore followed by Rs 1844.96 Crore in FY 2008-09.
In financial year 2009-10 the deficit touched Rs 2783.32 Crore followed by Rs 1842.57 Crore in FY 2010-11, Rs 1357.49 Crore in FY 2011-12 and Rs 1599.49 in FY 2012-13.
The deficit for fiscal year 2013-14 stood at Rs 3050 Crore, for FY 2014-15 it was Rs 5696.87 Crore while in FY 2015-16 it dipped at Rs 4749 Crore.
Next financial year in 2016-17 it jumped to Rs 6072 Crore followed by Rs 7682.85 Crore on FY 2017-18, highest till date in the history of budgets tabled for Uttarakhand state.
For financial year 2018-19, the fiscal deficit declined to Rs 5492.11 Crore followed by Rs 6798.16 for FY 2019-2020.