Rs.94.16 bn, tax-free deficit budget in Tripura

Agartala, April 26 (IANS) Tripura Finance Minister Badal Chaudhury Friday presented a Rs.94.16 billion tax-free budget with a deficit of Rs.2.05 billion for the current fiscal.

No new taxes have been proposed and no increase of existing taxes projected in the budget, presented on the first day of the three-week session of the assembly.

The budget, which is higher by 13.69 percent compared to the revised budget of 2012-13, anticipated growth of the state’s tax revenue in the current fiscal to increase by 14.62 percent.

“The budget deficit of Rs.2.05 billion would be covered by means of implementing austerity measures and mobilising additional revenue throughout the year,” Chaudhury said in his hour-long budget speech in the house.

This was Chaudhury’s 16th budget.

He said the provision for gender budget (solely for women) in plan outlay of the state has increased from Rs.3.37 billion in the last fiscal to Rs.3.83 billion in the current budget.

“The policies, programmes and initiatives announced in the first budget of the newly-formed seventh Left Front government would take forward the momentum of growth and development besides continuing the welfare measures with greater vigour,” Chaudhury added.

The Left Front led by the Communist Party of India-Marxist (49 seats) and including the Communist Party of India (one seat) won 50 of the 60 seats in the Feb 14 assembly polls. The main opposition Congress won only 10 seats.

Presenting the budget, Chaudhury demanded enactment of a comprehensive legislation by the central government for monitoring and controlling of non-banking financial companies, popularly known as chit fund companies, and suitable amendment of the constitution to provide reservation to other backward communities and religious minorities in educational institutions and government services.

“The central government must enact a comprehensive food security bill and women’s reservation bill,” he said.

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