Tax free Chhattisgarh budget focuses on agriculture, social sectors (Lead)

February 26th, 2011 - 7:32 pm ICT by IANS  

Bharatiya Janata Party Raipur, Feb 26 (IANS) Chhattisgarh Chief Minister Raman Singh Saturday presented a Rs.30,725.96 crore tax-free budget for the 2011-12 fiscal with its main emphasis on agriculture and social sectors.The total budget amount is about 25 percent higher compared to the 2010-2011 fiscal.

Amidst repeated interruptions by the opposition Congress members in the state assembly, Singh, who also holds the finance portfolio, presented the budget that lays emphasis on agriculture, veterinary and fisheries sectors.

The sectors get a hike of 37.98 percent for the 2011-2012 fiscal at Rs.1,329.99 crore compared to Rs.963 crore in the 2010-2011 fiscal.

The outlay for the social sector, which includes women and child development, health, tribal welfare and education, was increased to Rs.14,070.50 crore from Rs.10,333.50 crore, which is 36.09 percent rise.

The budget for police department that is battling with rising Maoist insurgency was put at Rs.1,535 crore, which is 35 percent higher than the budget amount allocated in the 2010-2011 fiscal.

A substantial amount of the police is to be spent on setting up new police stations in Maoist-hit areas, creating 4,000 additional forces and strengthening jail infrastructure.

Singh also announced a new scheme of food security for below poverty line (BPL) families for the insurgency hit Bastar region. The Rs.12 crore budgetary provision is to provide one kg chana (Gram) per month to about 4.5 lakh families.

The government has further announced that all country-made and foreign liquor shops in villages with population of up to 2,000 people will be closed with effect from April 1 this year.

Singh, who is heading the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) government since December 2003, admitted at a press conference later that the state has a debt of Rs.13,010 crore with per capita loan standing at about Rs.6,254.

The Congress has termed the budget a “disappointing one” and said the BJP government has made no provision to pull out the massive tribal and backward population from decades-old poverty.

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