Tuesday, July, 23,2024

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Fadnavis presents blueprint for ‘one-trillion dollar budget’

Mumbai: The budget for the financial year 2023-24 was presented in the Maharashtra Legislature on Thursday. Deputy Chief Minister and Finance Minister Devendra Fadnavis presented the budget in the Legislative Assembly, while School Education Minister Deepak Kesarkar presented it in the Legislative Council. The budget, an ambitious one, was presented keeping in view the target of one trillion dollars of state’s economy. This means that when India’s economy would reach five trillion, Maharashtra’s share in the prosperity would be twenty percent!

Notably, this was the first budget of the Eknath Shinde government formed eight months ago. Prima facie it appears to be an election budget in which the government has tried to please all sections of the society. The government presented a budget of about 16 thousand crore rupees deficit. In the paperless budget of about 1 hour 25 minutes, Fadnavis started reading out the budgetary allocations in the Lower House of the state legislature at 2 pm from an iPad instead of a conventional paper document as the budget focused on farmers, women, youth and healthcare, infrastructure.

The Shinde-Fadnavis government proposed Rs6,000 assistance to farmers and Rs 1 crop insurance scheme while also offering relief in professional tax to working women, 50% discount on ticket fares to women in state-run buses and a new scheme for the girl child.

This is the first time that Fadnavis presented the state budget as he holds the finance portfolio. During Fadnavis’s tenure as the chief minister between 2014-19, senior Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) leader Sudhir Mungantiwar was the finance minister.

“The budget focuses on sustainable agriculture, prosperous farmers, and inclusivity for women, tribal groups, and backward classes. It also focuses on huge capital investment in infrastructure development, employment generation, skilled youth, environment-friendly development,” he said.

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