The Assam Finance Minister Himanta Biswa Sarma presented the state Budget for the session 2017-18 on February 7, 2017 in the state assembly.The budget was based on the theme “Resurgent Assam”.
- As per the Minister the state Budget 2017-18 was Rs. 2,349.79 crore deficit Budget. The budget presented merged Plan and Non-Plan expenditures.
- The Government has redefined the role of Planning & Development Department. The department has been rechristened to the Department for Development and Transformation of Assam (DDTA).
Important Highlights of Assam Budget 2017-18
Revenue & Expenditure
The Budget Estimates of 2017-18, proposes to have a receipt of Rs 84,732.16 crore under consolidated fund of the state. Out of this, Rs 70,719.61 crore is on Revenue account and Rs 14,012.55 crore is under Capital account.
- Beside, adding the receipt of Rs 1,62,580.51 crore under Public account and Rs 100 crore under Contingency fund, the aggregate receipts amount to Rs 2,47,412.67 crore
- Similarly, the total expenditure proposed from the consolidated fund of the state is estimated at Rs 85,922.69 crore of which Rs 68,319.45 crore is on Revenue account and Rs 17,603.24 crore is on Capital account.
- While, taking into account the expenditure of Rs 1,61,757.17 crore under Public account and Rs 100 crore under Contingency fund, the aggregate expenditure for the year is estimated at Rs 2,47,779.86 crore.
The Assam government led by Sarbananda Sonowal, has proposed to bring appropriate legislation to ensure that students of the State must be taught one local language as inscribed in the 8th Schedule of the Constitution of India, by all schools including public, government, private up to Class 8.
- Highlighting the importance of Sanskrit language as one of the oldest language in the history, the government also proposed to make Sanskrit language compulsory in the schools where ever a Sanskrit teacher exists.
- The government also aims to fill vacant posts of Sanskrit teachers soon.
- The budget has proposed to increase Other Backward Class (OBC) reservation in the higher educational institutions from 15 percent to 29 percent.
- The Government proposed to provide two wheeler to top 1000 girl students in 10+2 examinations in 2017.
- Budget has proposed to introduce zero interest crop loans for farmers. They would get 100 percent interest subvention on agricultural loans up to Rs 1 lakh.
- Besides, the budget has proposed to provide Rs. 3000 per inactive Kisan Credit Cards (KCC) as one time cash incentive to increase the flow of credit to farmers.
- The Minister informed that there are around 9.60 lakh KCCs, out of which 80 percent are inactive.
Tea Garden Workers
- The budget has proposed to give Rs 5000 to each tea garden worker in his or her bank account. Rs. 287 allocated for this.
- It also proposes to set up Pravasi Asomiya Department.Each pregnant woman of garden areas would be given a one-time payment of Rs. 12000.
- Besides, the budget has proposed to set up substantial healthcare facility and schools in tea garden areas.
- Government has proposed to spend 5 percent of the budget from all the departments on tea garden areas.
- It propose to introduce reservation of seats for tea garden students in all higher educational institutions
- Around 670 students of the tea tribes who are pursuing engineering, medical or any other technical course would be provided assistance under Financial Assistance for Higher Studies.
- Government will also consider the revival plan of the gardens of Assam Tea Corporation.
- Fleet of 40 mobile medical units would be provided across 850 tea estates to meet healthcare needs of the plantation workers.
- Rs 100 crore to increase Muga silk production in Assam.
- To encourage Khadi, Minister has proposed an annual assistance of Rs 1,000 to each employee to spent on two sets of Khadi or handloom apparel
- In order to help the film industry of the State, the budget proposed a subsidy of Rs 50 Lakh for reopening of closed cinema halls and Rs 25 Lakh for renovation of existing/functional cinema halls.
- A subsidy of 25% of the capital cost in case of establishment of new cinema halls will also be given.
- Under Swami Vivekananda Assam Youth Empowerment Yojana (SVAYEM), 1 lakh youth would be given a financial support of Rs. 1 lakh for new business and Rs. 2 lakh for existing business.
- Proposed Kanakalata Mahila Sabalikaran Yojana (KAMS) with an allocation of Rs. 250 crore to promote 1 lakh women SHG and give each a support of Rs. 5 lakh.
- Gene Bank for Indigenous Fish (GBIF) have been designed for the conservation of 82 endangered variety of fishes
- City Infrastructure Development Fund (CIDF) of Rs. 1200 crore in 6 cities including Silchar, Tinsukia, Jorhat, Dibrugarh, Nagaon, and Tezpur.
- Housing loan at 5.05 percent to all government employees upto Rs. 15 lakh without collateral security.
- Rs. 100 crore to convert 1000 timber brides into permanent RCC bridges.
- Rs. 250 crore for Deen Dayal Divyang Sahajya Achani. Under this Rs. 5000 would be given to each 4.5 lakh Divyang for their treatment.
- Rs. 32 crore allocated for Multilevel Care parking at Panbazar and Ganeshpuri
- Rs. 15 crore Joint Venture with Railway Ministry to bulid Ropeway from Kamakhya Raliway station to Kamakhya Temple
- Government to start Mega business Summit under the name Vivacious in October-November 2017 to attract investment.