AGARTALA, March 18 - Tripura Finance Minister Tapan Chakraborty presented a tax-free deficit budget of Rs 15,246.52 crore for the year 2016-17 in the State Assembly on Friday.
The total expenditure under the budget estimate for the year 2016-17 is projected at Rs 15,246.52 crore with a growth of 17 per cent over the revised estimate of 2015-16 financial year.
This includes non-plan expenditure of Rs 8,631.59 crore while an amount of Rs 6,614.93 crore has been kept under the plan with an increase of 9.47 per cent over the revised estimate of 2015-16 FY. The total budget deficit stands at Rs 188.54 crore.
Tabling the budget, the Finance Minister said, �I tried to increase the allocations in core sectors despite slowing economy and difficult financial conditions of the State mainly due to the measures taken by the Centre.�
�The budget deficit is proposed to be covered by way of better tax compliance, austerity measures and additional resource mobilisation�, he said.
In his first-ever budget speech, Chakraborty alleged new liberal economic policies being vigorously and aggressively pursued by the Centre is adversely affecting the country�s economy.
�The State is constantly facing challenges towards meeting up the gap funding of projects which were initiated under various schemes with funding from the Centre in the earlier year�, he pointed out.
Chakraborty further said with the dismantling of Planning Commission, the Centre-State discussion and discourses virtually have come to an end and thus there is no forum for drawing attention of the State�s problems with the Centre.
The Minister, in his 33-page budget speech, also highlighted some projects which are in the pipeline. �Since the BG train service upto Agartala will be starting by next month, we demand for a Rajdhani train connecting Agartala to New Delhi and other super-fast trains connecting Agartala to other major cities in the country�, he said.
�We have already given required land to AAI to upgrade Agartala airport at the earliest. Side by side, there must be initiative to operationalise Kailashahar and Kamalpur airports on urgent basis�, he said.
The Internet service will receive a major fillip in the entire North East after opening of International Internet Gateway here very shortly, he said, adding that the State looks set to supply 100 MW power to Bangladesh which will be a major boost for the State economy.
However, there was no specific promise of providing government jobs to tackle the serious unemployment problem.