Wednesday, February 23, 2011

A R Reddy presents Rs 1,28,542 crore Budget

Andhra Pradesh Finance Minister Aanam Ramanarayana Reddy today unveiled a Rs 1,28,542 crore Budget for the 2011—12 financial year, projecting a fiscal deficit of Rs 17,602 crore.
The size of the budget is about Rs 15,000 crore more than last year’s budget estimate of Rs 1.13 lakh crore. This is the fourth consecutive year that the State’s Budget has been pegged at over Rs 1 lakh crore, despite actual spending falling way short of projections.
This was Mr. Ramanarayana Reddy’s maiden budget, which he presented at 11.43 am, the ‘muhurtam’ set for the occasion.
The Finance Minister pegged tax revenue in 2011—12 at Rs 56,438 crore, as against Rs 46,999 crore in the 2010—11 financial year. Non-tax revenue is expected to be Rs 12,339 crore, while central funds are projected at Rs 32,218 crore, including the State’s share of central taxes at Rs 16,826 crore.
The Plan outlay for 2011—12 has been put at Rs 47,558 crore and non-plan outlay at Rs 80,984 crore.
“Our State economy is likely to grow by 8.89 per cent in the year 2010—11, notwithstanding the heavy rains and floods which have adversely impacted the farming and allied sectors.
The Gross State Domestic Product at current prices is estimated at Rs 5.65 lakh crore, while per capita income during 2010—11 is estimated at Rs 60,224,” the Finance Minister said in his Budget speech.
The State is expected to achieve an industrial growth rate of 7.79 per cent in 2011—12, while the services sector is expected to expand by 9.61 per cent, he said.
“The good growth in GSDP is also expected to translate into buoyant revenue collections in the coming year at approximately 20 per cent higher than the current budget,” Mr. Reddy said.
“Our government is committed to continue all welfare programmes, while equal emphasis has been laid on development programmes by continuing substantial allocations to infrastructure sectors like irrigation, roads, water supply and power,” he said.
He said the government will introduce a Comprehensive Financial Management System (CFMS) for providing a seamless interface with all stakeholders and putting in place an efficient mechanism of electronic information sharing with external stakeholders in budgeting and accounting processes.
A sum of Rs 100 crore has been earmarked in the 2011—12 Budget for implementation of the CFMS.

AP CM asks Telangana supporters not to hamper welfare programmes

Reiterating that it was for the Centre to take a decision on the contentious statehood issue, Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister N Kiran Kumar Reddy today appealed to Telangana protagonists not to hamper the development and welfare programmes.
“The Telangana demand is not new and it has been there for the past 50 years. The Centre appointed the Srikrishna Committee to look into the issue and based on its recommendations and consultations with all political parties it will take a decision. The State government will implement whatever decision the Centre takes on Telangana,” Mr. Kiran Kumar Reddy said, replying to the motion of thanks to the Governor’s address in the state Assembly this afternoon.
The Chief Minister completed his reply in just about 12 minutes even as the TRS MLAs stormed the Speaker’s podium and raised slogans demanding that the House pass a resolution seeking creation of Telangana state.
Referring to the recent ‘Rachchabanda’ (mass contact programme) organised by the government across the State, the Chief Minister pointed out it was a massive success despite strong opposition by Telangana protagonists.
“The programme reflected the real aspirations of the people in getting their grievances redressed. More than 66 lakh new petitions were received during the three-week long programme from people seeking various welfare measures. Our government is committed to implement all the welfare programmes initiated since 2004,” Mr. Kiran asserted.
He warned the Telugu Desam Party that it would have to sit in the opposition for a third successive term if it did not cooperate with the government in implementing the welfare and development agenda.
The Chief Minister criticised TDP Chief and Leader of Opposition N Chandrababu Naidu for not even condemning the unruly incidents in the House during Governor ESL Narasimhan’s address on the opening day of the session.
“I strongly protest the indifference of the Opposition Leader. The Governor is not just a person, but an institution. If we insult the institution, we will end up as a laughing stock in front of the public who elected us,” Mr. Kiran remarked.
He defended the suspension of three TRS and two TDP MLAs from the House for a week and said it was due to their unruly behaviour during the Governor’s address and not any other issue.
The House then adopted the motion of thanks to the Governor’s address by voice vote.
Earlier, in the day Chief Whip Mallu Bhatti Vikramarka initiated the discussion on the motion while Congress MLA Dronamraju Srinivas seconded it.
None of the Opposition parties took part in the debate on the motion as the proceedings were constantly disrupted by TRS, CPI and TDP MLAs from Telangana. The House was adjourned three times in the morning session because of the disruptions.
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