Bhubaneswar: The term ‘Green Budget’ was coined for the budget 2020-21, which helped to save around 1,000 trees.
A Climate Budget was introduced to provide an account of tracking climate public expenditure and SAMRUDHI-Agriculture Policy 2020 was proposed for continuous and inclusive growth in the income of farmers. The other highlight was Rs 150 crore Ekamra Kshetra Amenities and Monuments Revival Action (EKAMRA) Plan and Rs 695 crore Abadha Plan.
Monday will see Finance Minister Niranjan Pujari presenting the budget 2021-22 in the State Assembly.
Despite the Odisha Economic Survey pegging the economic growth at -4.92 per cent in 2020-21, it is expected to be a growth-oriented budget of Rs 1.76 lakh crore.
Pujari had presented Rs 1.5 lakh crore budget for 2020-21 before the COVID-19 pandemic. The drastic reduction of the state’s share in central taxes, however, has made the task difficult for the minister with Odisha looking for a bigger budget to boost the stagnant economy and create more jobs.
The 15th Finance Commission (FC) has recommended a total transfer of Rs 2.22 lakh crore to Odisha for five years against a demand of Rs 8.24 lakh crore.
The Labour Force Participation Rate (LFPR) in Odisha had witnessed a drop of 2 per cent last year.
A report published in The New Indian Express said that the Odisha government will have to go for more borrowings to support the different schemes announced by it in view of the reduction in central assistance. The state’s economy has also been severely hit by the pandemic.
Experts stressed the need for higher spending on economic services sectors like agriculture, irrigation, urban and rural development, housing, energy, and construction of roads and bridges.
“To give a fillip to employment generation, the total outlay for the economic services sector need to be hiked to Rs 70,000 crore from Rs 57,000,” a senior IAS officer told a local channel.
According to sources, there will be a hike in capital expenditure and a similar is expected in health, water and sanitation, education and skill development, urban development, agriculture and allied services, tourism and for the welfare of SCT/ST/OBC.
The state government is also likely to announce an employment generation initiative for the urban poor. Fund allocations are expected for ABHADAH and Ekamra Ketra programmes and the development of Konark Sun Temple and Samaleswari Temple in Sambalpur.