GUWAHATI, July 11 � State finances are quite stable and secure from a long-term point of view as well, said the Chief Minister in his Budget speech today. He also maintained that a steady upward trend is witnessed in the growth rate of the Gross State Domestic Product (GSDP) of the State during the last few years.
He also claimed that as per an advance estimate, the GSDP at current prices is expected to be Rs 1,04,218.00 crore during 2010-11, with an expected growth of 12.70 per cent over 2009-10.
To drive home his point, he said that the outstanding debt-GSDP ratio of the State, as on March 31, 2011, was 28 per cent, which is within the limit of 28.2 per cent prescribed by the 13th Finance Commission for Assam.
The interest payment of the State to revenue receipt ratio has also come down to a very comfortable level of only 9 per cent as against the prudent limit of 15 per cent prescribed by the 12th Finance Commission.
The State has been making timely contributions to and maintaining a reasonable balance in the Consolidated Sinking Fund. The Guarantee Redemption Fund has also been constituted and duly funded.
The new Contributory Pension Scheme for the State Government employees who joined service after February 1, 2005, is being implemented vigorously with equal contribution from the State Government. As a result of this, the State Government will be relieved of the burden of pension payment liability in future, said the Chief Minister.
The GSDP growth rate of the State in 2000-01, at 1999-2000 constant prices, was only 2.53 per cent. As per the advance estimates, the GSDP
of the State in terms of constant (2004-05) prices for 2010-11 is Rs 75,082 crore with an estimated growth of 7.38 per cent over 2009-10, he said.
As per a quick estimate, the GSDP of the State at the constant (2004-05) prices was Rs 69,924 crore in 2009-10 with a growth rate of 8.08 per cent over 2008-09.
As per the advance estimate, the per capita GSDP at current prices of Assam in 2010-11 is Rs 34,267 as against Rs 30,786 in 2009-10, as found in a quick estimate. The per capita income of Assam on the basis of NSDP in 2010-11 is estimated to be as 30,413, as against Rs 27,197 in 2009-10, the Chief Minister said.
Rise in price index: On the price front, he said the wholesale price index (WPI) (base 1993-94=100) in Assam during 2010-11 was 272. It has registered an increase of 10 per cent over 2009-10. The WPI for India during the same period was 327, and it showed an increase of 19 per cent over the previous year.
Similarly, the consumer price index (base 2000 =100) for working class population in Assam was 164 during the year 2010-11, he said.
Special package of Rs 300 crore for socio-economic development of SC, ST and OBCs.
Twelve new colleges and 21 polytechnics to be set up.
Schools set up before 2006 to be provincialized in a phased manner.
Proposal to increase rate of literary, cultural and sports pension from Rs 2000 to Rs 4000 per month.
Proposal for a Government run cable/satellite television channel and community radio stations.
Institute of Mass Communication and Printing Technology to be set up.
Plan for State Rural Development Authority to foster growth in rural areas.
Assam Skill Development Authority for skill upgradation of unemployed youths to be set up.