Punjab Budget: No new taxes imposed; education, health key focus areas : The Tribune India

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Punjab Budget: No new taxes imposed; education, health key focus areas

The budget remains silent on giving Rs 1,000 monthly to each woman

Punjab Budget: No new taxes imposed; education, health key focus areas

Finance Minister Harpal Cheema present budget on the third day of Punjab Assembly's Budget session, in Chandigarh, on March 5, 2024. Tribune photo: Vicky



PTI

Chandigarh, March 5

Punjab Finance Minister Harpal Singh Cheema on Tuesday presented the state's budget with a total outlay of Rs 2.04 lakh crore for 2024-25, announcing a new canal project and proposing to transform government schools as 'Schools of Brilliance' and 'Schools of Happiness' but did not impose any fresh tax.

Keeping the budget's focus on health, education and agriculture sectors, the finance minister also announced a new initiative Punjab Horticulture Advancement and Sustainable Entrepreneurship to improve product quality and develop horticulture crop clusters in major production zones.

The budget remained silent on giving Rs 1,000 monthly to each woman, which was one of the key "guarantees" of the AAP before coming to power in 2022.

Replying to a question on his party's key promise during media interaction later, Cheema said it will soon be fulfilled while claiming that 85 per cent "guarantees", including free electricity, which were announced before the 2022 assembly polls, have been honoured.

Terming it a "pro-people" budget, Cheema further said no fresh tax has been imposed.

Cheema said the revenue from excise is expected to reach Rs 10,350 crore in 2024-25 and asserted that the collection would cross five figures for the first time.

Chief Minister Bhagwant Mann hailed the budget 2024-25 as a step forward towards carving out 'Rangla Punjab' through inclusive, balanced and comprehensive development of the state.

Opposition leader Partap Singh Bajwa (Congress) dubbed it a "failed" budget.

In his budget, Cheema proposed an outlay of Rs 2,04,918 crore for the financial year 2024-25, up from Rs 1,99,076 crore in 2023-24 (revised estimates).

The budget has earmarked Rs 9,330 crore towards power subsidy for the agriculture sector and Rs 7,780 crore for providing free electricity of 300 units per month to domestic consumers.

While announcing several new initiatives, the finance minister allocated Rs 575 crore for various crop diversification schemes for farmers.

Cheema said Rs 13,784 crore has been earmarked for the agriculture sector and Rs 16,987 crore for the education sector.

The effective revenue deficit and fiscal deficit are expected to be 2.77 per cent and 3.8 per cent of the state GDP, respectively, he said, adding that the two respective figures were 3.13 per cent and 4.12 per cent in the previous fiscal. 

13:11 05 Mar
Strived hard to bring down Revenue Deficit and Fiscal Deficit: Cheema

After announcing his budget proposals for 2024-25, Finance Minister Harpal Cheema said that he had strived hard to bring down the Revenue Deficit and Fiscal Deficit, as percentage of GSDP.

12:48 05 Mar
The total debt servicing in the next fiscal, including repayment of debt, will cost the state Rs 36,766.56 crore.
12:47 05 Mar
The Budget has a revenue deficit of Rs 23198.14 crore (2.77 percent of GSDP) and fiscal deficit of Rs 30464.92 crore (3.80 percent of GSDP)
12:45 05 Mar
In 2024-25, the government proposes to raise loans worth Rs 38,331.48 crore

Rs 23,900 crore will go towards servicing of debt, as outstanding public debt set to rise to Rs 37,40,91.31 crore by March 2025.

12:11 05 Mar
Rs 7,780 crore for zero electricity bills

Rs 7,780 crore set aside for zero electricity bills that domestic consumers are getting under the 300 units of free power to households.

12:06 05 Mar
Free bus travel facility for women to continue, with Rs 450 crore being set aside for this.
12:05 05 Mar
FM Cheema announces Malwa Canal project for the state.
12:04 05 Mar
Rs 30 crore allocated for construction of bridges between Khera Kalmot and Bhalladi and between Bela Dhyani and Ajauli- all located in Anandpur Sahib.
11:59 05 Mar
Rs 9,388 crore allocated for various social welfare schemes

Of this, Rs 5,925 crore set aside for providing social security pensions.

11:58 05 Mar
Allocation for Home Affairs and Justice department is Rs 10,635 crore

An eco tourism project, to be implemented in coming three years, has been implemented.

Allocation for Home Affairs and Justice department is Rs 10,635 crore.

11:55 05 Mar
Allocation of Rs 3,367 crore for industry sector

Industry sector has got the allocation of Rs 3367 crore, which includes the subsidised power to industrial consumers.

11:54 05 Mar
Rs 70 crore allocated for drug de-addiction initiatives
11:54 05 Mar
Health sector got funds worth Rs 5,264 crore

Health sector has got funds worth Rs 5,264 crore.

829 Aam Aadmi clinics have been established, and many more are in the pipeline, says Finance Minister Harpal Cheema.

11:53 05 Mar
Rs 272 crore allocated for Sports and Youth Services

Rs 272 crore allocated for Sports and Youth Services.

Government announces 1,000 sports nurseries in all districts of the state.

11:52 05 Mar
No new taxes have been imposed
11:51 05 Mar
Total allocation for Education sector is Rs 16,987 crore

Another mission — Mission Samrath to be started for providing essential skills to primary and upper primary school students.

The total allocation for the Education sector is Rs 16,987 crore.

11:50 05 Mar
The power subsidy to agriculture pump set consumers has been increased to Rs 9,330 crore for 2024-25.
11:50 05 Mar
Sum of Rs 13,784 crore earmarked for Agriculture and Allied sectors

A sum of Rs 13,784 crore has been earmarked for Agriculture and Allied sectors. As much as Rs 575 crore has been allocated for Crop Diversification. 

A new initiative in Horticulture- Punjab Horticulture Advancement and Sustainable Entrepreneurship to improve product quality and develop Horticulture crop clusters.

11:43 05 Mar
Government to transform 100 senior secondary schools into Schools of Brilliance

In a new initiative, the government has announced transforming 100 senior secondary schools into Schools of Brilliance, and 100 primary schools into Schools of Happiness.

In education sector, the FM also announces establishing of “School of Applied Learning”. Hi-tech vocational labs to be constructed in 40 schools, he said.

11:42 05 Mar
Govt hopes to have total revenue receipts of Rs 1.03 lakh crore in 2024-25: Finance Minister

Cheema says government hopes to have total revenue receipts of Rs 1,03,936 crore in 2024-25, of which own tax revenue will account for Rs 58,900 crore.

The state will also get 22,041 crore as its share from central taxes and Rs 11,748 crore as Grants in Aid from Centre, he adds.

11:39 05 Mar
Government providing an average of 55 jobs a day: Cheema

Presenting the budget, Finance Minister Harpal Cheema said the government have been able to consolidate the revenue resources of the state, achieving an annual growth rate in States Own Tax Revenue of 13 percent.

He said that the government has been providing an average of 55 jobs a day.

11:13 05 Mar
Bajwa seeks status of privilege motion moved against CM Mann

At the end of question hour, Leader of Opposition Partap Singh Bajwa asks Speaker about the status of privilege motion moved against CM Bhagwant Mann for his remarks against Dalit MLA Sukhwinder Kotli.

Speaker says he would revert back.

10:12 05 Mar
Congress MLAs seek apology from CM Mann

As the question hour begins on the third day of the Budget session, Congress MLAs carrying placards enter the House.

The Opposition Congress MLAs are seeking an apology from CM Bhagwant Mann.

Congress MLAs protest against CM Mann outside Punjab Vidhan Sabha on Tuesday. Tribune photo: Vicky

#Harpal Cheema


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