Chhattisgarh presents Rs.222.11 bn tax-free budget

February 9th, 2009 - 8:15 pm ICT by IANS  

Bharatiya Janata PartyRaipur, Feb 9 (IANS) The Bharatiya Janata Party Monday presented a Rs.222.11 billion budget which levies no new taxes for the fiscal 2009-10. The budget has a deficit component of Rs.11.85 billion.

In the maiden budget of his second term, Chief Minister Raman Singh announced a pro-poor stimulus package including a two-tier low-price rice scheme which envisages providing rice at Re.1 per kg to 700,000 families and at Rs.2 per kg to about three million families. The scheme under the Chief Minister’s Food Assistance Programme will cost the state exchequer Rs.14.58 billion.

The scheme is a part of electoral commitments made by the saffron government in the run up to the state elections in November last year.

Raman Singh, who also holds the finance portfolio, announced that small traders having annual turnover of less than Rs.1 million will be exempted from professional tax. Also, bio-fuel has been made tax free and value added tax (VAT) on steel fabricated items has been slashed to four percent from the existing 12.5 percent.

The budget size of Rs.222.11 billion is 12.5 percent higher than the current fiscal’s revised estimate of Rs.197.46 billion.

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