Guwahati, March 10: Assam Chief Minister Tarun Gogoi on Tuesday presented a Rs.265.32 crore deficit budget for 2015-16. The main attraction of the budget were special schemes for women.
"Taking into account the expenditure of Rs.1,82,440.30 crore under public accounts and Rs.100 crore under contingency fund, the aggregate expenditure for the year has been estimated at Rs.2,48,682.47 crore," the chief minister said in his budget speech.
"Thus the estimated transactions during the year will result in an estimated surplus of Rs.1,609.78 crore. Thus, together with the opening deficit of Rs.1,875.10 crore, the financial year 2015-16 is expected to end with an estimated closing deficit of Rs.265.32 crore," he said.
Gogoi announced a separate development council for women and children, working women's hostels in all district headquarters, residential schools for girls from families living below poverty line (BPL) in every district headquarters, financial assistance to women self help groups, unmarried women and for marriage of girls from BPL families.
"We are taxing the rich and providing relief to the poor people and the common man. There is no proposal to tax the common man in the budget," Gogoi told the media after presenting the budget.
He said additional revenue was being mobilized by increasing taxes on motor vehicles, which were not increased since 2011.
An additional Rs.100 crore will be generated through this, he said.
"The main resources will be taxes on liquor and alcohol with an aim to discourage pub culture. We will generate Rs.600 crore more through this," he said.
The budget for 2015-16 also assured to fill up 65,000 posts in the government sector.
"My government believes in the strength and spirit of the youth. My government will make all efforts for employment generation for more than seven lakh young people in the near future," he said.Vacancies in the state police force will also be filled up.
The chief minister assured that the government would undertake new schemes for the improvement of standard of living and of the social indicators of various ethnic groups.
He proposed six more development councils for Garo, Kumar, Madahi, Sut, Hajong and Chaodang communities.
The budget also has a proposal for setting up a state environment management authority and schemes to reduce the man-elephant conflict.
Gogoi said the government will initiate special incentive packages for small and medium industries and emphasis will be placed on food processing, medicinal plants, bamboo and rubber industries.