CHENNAI: Presenting the first full-fledged budget of the DMK government led by Chief Minister MK Stalin today, Finance Minister Palanivel Thiaga Rajan brought cheers to the state's economy by announcing that the revenue deficit which has been going up in an alarming trend since 2014 will be reversed this year.
The revenue deficit is expected to be reduced by Rs.7,000 crore while the fiscal deficit will see a significant reduction - i.e, from 4.61 per cent to 3.80 per cent.
"The attempts to destabilise the federal principle of our country pain us more. However, this government will continue to fight for the rights of the States," the Finance Minister said.
Stating that there are chances that the forthcoming financial year could be an unstable one, Rajan said due to the Russia-Ukraine war, the global efforts to redeem economic growth might get hindered.
Hence, the demand shocks and global supply disruptions at the global level may have an impact on the State economy.
Economic experts predict a rise in inflation and interest rate. Also, the State is yet to get rid of the impact of the Covid pandemic.
The Minister said Chief Minister M K Stalin is the foundation of such action who symbolised the 'Dravidian model' of growth, that underlined self-respect, harmony and social justice driven all-inclusive growth.
The government has decided to bear the entire loss of the TANGEDCO and the impact of hiking the DA for government employees besides the waiver of loans. So, the government may face the impact of these issues.
The focus areas of this budget would be: increasing the growth rate of primary sectors like agriculture; strengthening social security, increasing opportunities for job creation for the youth by implementing special schemes in schools and colleges, increasing job opportunities by attracting new investments and by encouraging entrepreneurs, economic growth of the marginalised sections of the society, eradicating poverty by inclusive growth, establishing social justice in all sectors, etc.
The Minister said the government would table the Action Taken Report on the recommendations made by the Sixth State Finance Commission very soon.
Rajan charged that the Union Government had failed to devolve proportionate financial devolution to Tamil Nadu in tune with the population (6.12 per cent) and total domestic production of the State (around 10 percent).
"The revenue growth which Tamil Nadu witnessed during the Value Added Tax regime has not been achieved since the implementation of the Goods and Services Tax (GST) Act. Moreover, the Covid pandemic has severely affected the finances of all States. At this juncture, the GST compensation period is coming to end on June 30. Consequently, in the coming financial year, Tamil Nadu will face a revenue loss of approximately Rs 20,000 crore," the Minister said.
Since the revenues of States are yet to recover from the impact of the pandemic, the Chief Minister has requested the Union Government to extend this compensation for two more years. He expressed confidence that the Union Government would heed this legitimate request.
With a view to establishing the relationship between the Tamil language and the Indo-European language family, a committee of Tamil etymologists will be formed to prepare an etymological dictionary. For this project, an amount of two crore rupees has been allocated in this budget.
It has been scientifically established that education through mother tongue is the most effective form of education.
In order to promote education in Tamil medium, school kits including textbooks and notebooks, which are being provided to students studying in Government schools will be extended to students of Classes 1 to 10 in private unaided schools which teach exclusively in Tamil medium, from this year onwards, at an estimated cost of Rs.15 crore.
During this year, a preliminary reconnaissance will be done in collaboration with the Indian Maritime University and National Institute of Ocean Technology to identify a suitable location for deep-sea excavation at Korkai, a Sangam era port of the Pandya Kings.
The works for excavation in seven sites, archaeological exploration in two sites and for preliminary works in Korkai will be undertaken at a cost of Rs. 5 crore.
This year, new museums will be built in Villupuram and Ramanathapuram districts at an estimated cost of Rs.10 crore. In addition, the tribal on-site museum at Courtallam in Tenkasi district, the pre-historic on-site museum at Poondi in Tiruvallur district and the Hero-Stone on-site museum in Dharmapuri district will be upgraded at an estimated cost of Rs.10 crore.
To preserve heritage public buildings in the state, a special allocation of Rs.50 crore has been made this year to carry out renovation works without compromising on their innate heritage value.
Tamil Nadu's share of Central revenue share stands just at 4.079 percent according to the 15th Finance Commission's recommendations.
This commission had recommended Rs.21,246 crore towards subsidies for local bodies for the five year period covered by the 15th Finance Commission.
The works of Periyar EV Ramasamy will be published in 21 volumes in Indian and foreign languages. For this, Rs 5 crore would be allocated.
As soon as the Finance Minister began his Budget presentation, Leader of Opposition K Palaniswami tried to raise some issues.
Speaker M Appavu said nothing would go on record and added that time would be given to the opposition following the budget presentation and they could voice their views later.
Din prevailed in the House for a while as principal opposition party members including deputy leader O Panneerselvam were on their feet seeking to raise some matters.
Slogans were also raised by opposition members.
The Speaker urged them repeatedly to resume their seats and said that the business for March 18 is confined to the budget presentation.
Both Palaniswami and Panneerselvam, who were former Chief Ministers knew the practices well and they should protect the Assembly traditions, the Speaker said.
Police department to have exclusive Social Media monitoring centre
The Tamil Nadu government to battle fake news and misinformation on social media platforms have decided to form a Special Social Media Centre under the police department.
School education department gets highest allocation of Rs 36,895 crore
For the third consecutive year, school education department has been accorded the highest allocation in the State Budget, at Rs 36,895.89 crore. Last year, the allocation was Rs 34,181 crore.
Tamil Nadu government plans to borrow Rs 90,116 crore during 2022-23: Finance Minister PTR
Presenting the budget for 2022-23, Finance Minister PTR said the estimates for receipt and repayment of borrowings have been finalised on the basis of the overall borrowing ceiling fixed by the Union government.
Tamil Nadu seeks extension of GST compensation for two years, fears revenue loss of Rs 20,000 crore
The Tamil Nadu government has urged the Centre to extend GST compensation by a couple of years as the state could face a revenue loss of approximately Rs 20,000 crore during the next financial year.
Tamil Nadu government gives nod to raise Floor Space Index along metro, transport corridors
The Tamil Nadu government has announced that it will raise the floor space index beyond 2 along metro rail corridors, national highways and by-pass roads to encourage transit-oriented development.
Periyar's works to be translated into 21 languages by Tamil Nadu government
To promote the ideas of social reformer and Dravidar Kazhagam founder EVR Periyar across the country and outside, the Tamil Nadu government has decided to translate his written works into 21 Indian and foreign languages.
Tamil Nadu to set up advance early warning system for floods, allocates Rs 10 crore in Budget
In order to receive timely warnings before a disaster strikes, the Tamil Nadu government has decided to establish an advanced early warning system with supercomputers, a system of weather balloons, two weather radars, 100 automatic weather stations, 400 automatic rain gauges and 11 automatic water level instruments.
Other Key points from the Budget:
To research the relationship between Tamil and Indo-European languages and other research relating to Tamil language, Rs 2 crore will be allotted.
Museums will be built at the cost of Rs 10 crore in Villupuram and Ramanathapuram.
To modernise the land survey, Rs 15 crore has been allotted to procure rovers.
Tamil Development Department has been allocated Rs 82.86 crore.
Rs 300 crore has been allocated for a botanical garden in partnership with London Kew Garden.
20 crore for renovating Guindy National Park in order to increase the interest among children about the environment.
In order to develop the government schools, Perasiriyar K Anbazhagan Education Development Scheme will be created. While Rs 7,000 crore will be spent on the scheme over the five years.