Yogi Adityanath's maiden budget highlights the BJP's agenda

Last Updated: Tue, Jul 11, 2017 19:31 hrs
Yogi Adityanath's maiden budget highlights the BJP's agenda

(Image tweeted by @myogiadityanath)

Highlighting its agenda, the Uttar Pradesh Government, in its first budget, has allocated Rs 1,240 crore for developing tourism circuits in the name of Ramayan, Krishna and Buddha.

Provisions have also been made for organising special programmes during Lok Malhar festival in Gorakhpur – the constituency of Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath, and Sawan jhula in Ayodhya. The government has also kept Rs 500 crore for Ardh Kumbh.

However, the Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath, in his speech stressed that, “The focus of our budget is on improving the infrastructure, on which the future growth of the state will depend.”

Around Rs 56,000 crore has been allocated for various new schemes.

The total budget of Rs 384,660 crore is nearly 11 percent more than the previous year’s. However, it has a negative balance of 43,000 crore and a deficit of 2.95 percent in the state GDP.

Yogi’s Cabinet Minister for Finance, Rajesh Agarwal, while presenting the budget in the assembly session, said the government has inherited communalism, violence, and crime from its predecessors.

“But, the Yogi government is working for an overall development of everyone in the state,” said Agarwal. “The target is to make the growth rate reach 10 percent in next five years.”

Immediately after swearing in, the government had promised loan waiver to farmers, for which the Central government had denied any help. However, keeping up its word, the Yogi government has made a provision of Rs 36,000 to benefit at least 86 lakh farmers, who are facing debts worth one lakh or less.

Yogi had also said that this scheme would not cause a burden on people and would not be a reason to impede the growth of the state.

The government targets to raise this money through excise revenue, stamp collection, and vehicle registration fee, which according to its estimates, will be nearly Rs 44,000 crore.

In aggregate, the government estimates to generate approximately Rs 377,000 crore.

The government also expects to gain the dividends of GST and earn at least 65,000 crore which was Rs 55,000 crore last year, under VAT.

Along with a number of routine developmental schemes, such as infrastructure, agriculture, education, the government has paid special focus to schemes relating to its party’s (read BJP’s) identity. These include schemes in the name of leaders of yesteryears as well as cow protection.

If a sum of Rs 300 crore is kept aside for Deen Dayal Upadhyay Urban Development Scheme, at least Rs 40 crore have been allocated for Kanha Upvan (Gaushala) and Kanji house (shelter for stray animals).

The focus of the government is on ‘Make in UP’, and the same gets reflected in budget allocations for Centre of Excellence (Rs 10 crore) and Smart City Project (Rs 1500 crore).

The Yogi government is also working on a few policies, including Investment Policy, Textile Policy, and even a new Vendor Policy.

Alka Pande is an independent journalist, travel blogger & photographer based in Lucknow. She writes on issues relating to government policies, environment, health, business, and human resources.

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