AP govt to present over Rs 1.20 lakh crore budget for 2010-12

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Hyderabad, Feb 22 (PTI) A grim financial scenario in theface of a troubled political situation notwithstanding, AndhraPradesh will go in for a hefty budget of over Rs 1.20 lakhcrore for the 2011-12 financial year.

Finance Minister Aanam Ramanarayana Reddy will presentthe 2011-12 budget to the state Legislature tomorrow.

This will be the fourth successive year that the statewill have a budget in excess of Rs one lakh crore. In 2010-11the budget estimates were to the tune of Rs 1,13,675 crore andRs 1.03 lakh crore in 2009-10.

"It will be a realistic budget and will meet everyrequirement," Ramanarayana Reddy told PTI on the eve of hismaiden budget presentation.

Noting that the state''s revenue witnessed a shortfall inthe previous two years, Reddy said the situation improved inthe 2010-11 fiscal.

Despite the shortfalls, the minister pointed out, thestate had been presenting a "tax-free and deficit-free" budgetfor the past few years.

In the 2010-11 budget, a sum of Rs 1,13,600 crore hasbeen earmarked for expenditure � both plan and non-plan � butthe government could not spend even Rs 70,000 crore as per thelatest estimates available, official sources said.

Presenting the Macro Economic Framework Statement for thefirst half of the current fiscal to the state Assembly today,the Finance Minister said an expenditure of Rs 38,839 crore(plan and non-plan) was incurred between April and September2010 while the revenue receipts were Rs 33,704 crore. Thefiscal deficit during the period stood at Rs 5,070.95 crore.

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Ever since it came to power in 2004, the Congress government had been earmarking a lion''s share of the statebudget for the Jalayagnam (irrigation projects) programme. In2010-11, a sum of Rs 15,000 crore was allocated for irrigationbut not even half that has actually been spent so far becauseof the severe funds crunch.

Similarly, the government had to impose drastic cuts inexpenditure on many welfare schemes despite grandioseallocations in the budget.

A case in point is the fee reimbursement scheme forstudents pursuing professional courses. Though Rs 3,000 crorehas been earmarked in the budget, the government released onlyRs 1,000 crore, that too after the Supreme Court rapped it onthe issue.

The ongoing agitation for a separate Telangana has alsocast a spell on the state''s finances. The non-cooperationagitation launched recently has resulted in non-collection ofrevenue causing loss in several hundred crore rupees to theexchequer.

All such factors notwithstanding, the government willpresent a budget of over Rs 1.20 lakh crore for the ensuingfiscal.

The state Cabinet will meet tomorrow morning and formallyapprove the budget estimates before they are presented to theAssembly at 12 noon.

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