By BS Reporter
The State Council of ministers chaired by chief minister Naveen Patnaik on Thursday approved the Budget for 2013-14.
Though the Council was tight lipped on the details of the Finance Bill, sources said the Budget size for the next fiscal could touch Rs 60,000 crore, nearly 15 per cent higher than the outlay of Rs 52,030.70 crore for 2012-13. The State Plan size is likely to be Rs 21,000 crore, 25 per cent higher than Rs 17,000 crore for 2012-13. Besides the Rs 1 per kg rice scheme announced by the chief minister, the Budget is expected to contain new schemes in sectors like agriculture and water resources. The Budget will be presented on February 19, five days after commencement of the state assembly's Budget session on February 14. Odisha’s Gross State Domestic Product (GSDP) for the next fiscal has been pegged at Rs 2.9 lakh crore, 11.53 per cent higher than the present figure of Rs 2.6 lakh crore.
The finance department had recently held a two-day pre-Budget consultative process with representatives of different socio-economic groups, industrial bodies, opinion makers, academicians, bureaucrats in the run up to the Budget. The objective of the pre-Budget consultation was to assimilate the views of different sections of the society which would help the planners to make the budget more broad-based, people oriented and transparent.
Ahead of the Budget presentation, Centre for Science and Youth Development (CYSD), a city-based non-governmental organisation (NGO) has urged the state government to make efforts to increase share of plan expenditure in total expenditure. The NGO has pointed out that non plan expenditure of the state occupies two-third of resources available while the share of plan expenditure to state budget has stagnated in last five years