Four Thrust Areas of Odisha Budget

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Bhubaneswar: The Odisha government has resorted to more borrowings to meet its expenditure, city-based NGO CYSD said in its reaction to the budget proposals tabled in the State Assembly on Friday by Finance Minister Niranjan Pujari.

It said that the state is estimated to borrow Rs 22,734 crore to meet its budgeted expenditure of Rs 1.39 lakh crore, which was more than the previous years. But the borrowing is less as compared to other developed states.

Health and Family Welfare Department:

CYSD said that though the allocation has gone up by Rs 570.57 cr to 6804 core, a significant gap still persists between budget estimates and actual expenditure in previous years.

In 2017-18, the allocation for the health care sector stood at 5712.33 crore but the actual spending came to only 4,926 crore.

School and Mass Education:

The education sector has got enhanced focus in this year’s budget at Rs 16,400 crore, Rs 1,381 crore more than the last financial year.

A provision of Rs 150 crore has been made for infrastructure development of higher educational institutes and Rs 47 crore for disbursement of laptops, career counselling and coaching for students.

The ‘Odisha higher education programme for excellence and equity’ to transform select universities and colleges into institute of eminence has been allocated Rs 150 crore. The programme is spread over five years.

Water and Sanitation: 

CYSD, in its analysis said, 82 per cent of Rs 7339.49 crore in this sector has gone towards rural areas.

A new ‘piped water supply project’ has been introduced with an allocation of Rs 5000 crore.

Agriculture:

The budgetary allocation has gone up by 23.5 per cent at Rs 20,714 crore.

*Increase allocation towards agriculture and farmers welfare with a lion share of Rs 5501 crore going for the Kalia scheme.

* Reduction in share of water resource department as well as animal resources and fisheries.

* Less attention on organic farming and allocation for agriculture extension services reduced. Shortage of human resource is already a major issue for failure in effectively implementing the schemes, CYSD said.

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