BHUBANESWAR: Even as the Union Budget 2020-21 presented by Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman on Saturday is being decoded by experts working in different sectors, the State Government called it a mixed bag.
While welcoming some of the measures taken by the Finance Minister to boost the agriculture sector, Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik expressed concern over the negative reaction of the market to the Budget. He said Sensex is an indication of investor confidence. The drop of about 1,000 points in the stock markets shows that there is a huge scope to take a number of measures.
"Investor confidence is important for fresh investments to come in, to spur growth which is the biggest challenge now. This will have a huge impact on job creation and livelihood options for our youth," the Chief Minister told reporters in his budget reaction. Expressing concern over the reduced share of the State in the divisive pool of Central taxes, Naveen said collection of tax has shrunk by almost Rs 59,000 crore.
While allocations under the Centrally sponsored schemes remained stagnant, allocation of Rs 11,500 crore nationally for supply of drinking water against an approved plan of Rs 3.6 lakh crore is a peanut. "Expenditure of the State on drinking water supply alone is Rs 3,600 crore," he noted.
However, he welcomed the Pradhan Mantri Kisan Urja Suraksha and Utthan Mahabhiyan (PM KUSUM) that proposed to help 20 lakh farmers set up standalone solar pumps.
The scheme will enable farmers to set up solar power generation capacity on their fallow/barren land and sell it to the grid. The proposal is intended to double the income of the farmers. ALSO READ| The Chief Minister also hailed the Kisan Rail and Krishi Udan schemes announced by the Finance Minister.
Market worries CM
In order to preserve perishable goods and their faster transport, the Finance Minister announced a special rail service for farmers. The Centre plans to run a Kisan rail through PPP mode for transport of perishable goods like milk, meat, fish and vegetables.
Express and Freight trains will have refrigerated coaches.Krishi Udan to be launched by the Ministry of Civil Aviation on international and national routes will help value realisation in North East and tribal districts.
"Odisha had requested for extension of concessional tax rates to cooperatives in line with corporate tax cut. We welcome the announcement of concessional tax rates for cooperatives," the Chief Minister said.