• Fri. Jun 9th, 2023

Infra Push, Farmers, Women in Focus in Shinde Sena-BJP Govt’s 1st Budget for Maha; Oppn Dubs it as ‘Scam’


Mar 9, 2023

During the budget presentation, Fadnavis said the outlay for farmers has been increased by Rs 6,900 crore. (Photo: PTI)

The state government also announced that women can avail 50% discount on the State Transport bus service from the new financial year

Maharashtra Deputy Chief Minister and Finance Minister Devendra Fadnavis on Thursday presented the first budget of BJP-Shiv Sena (Eknath Shinde).

In his speech, Fadnavis said that the budget is based on the “Panchamrut” and will focus on five elements to help the state achieve sustainable growth in the coming years–Sustainable Farming & Prosperous Farmers; Development of Women, Tribals and OBCs 3; Infrastructure Development; Job Creation and Skill Development and Environmental Development.

The Shinde-led government, in which his faction of the Shiv Sena and the BJP share power, was formed in June 2022.

Big Relief to Farmers: Rs 6,000 Yearly Payout, Crop Insurance at Rs 1

During the budget presentation, Fadnavis said the outlay for farmers has been increased by Rs 6,900 crore.

In a big relief to farmers, Fadnavis announced that the state government will provide Rs 6,000 per year to farmers at the cost of Rs 6900 crore and crop insurance at a nominal rate of Rs 1.

The Finance Minister also proposed a Rs 10,000 cr interest-free loan to the shepherd community.

Fadnavis also reintroduced the ‘Jalyuktshivar’ scheme, which was scrapped last year by the Uddhav Thackeray government after allegations of funds mismanagement emerged. The new scheme will be called ‘Jalyuktshivar 2.0′ and will be rolled in in 5000 villages across the state in the beginning.

50% Discount for Women in State Buses; Anganwadi, ASHA Workers Pay Increased

The state government also announced that women can avail 50% discount on the State Transport bus service from the new financial year. It also addressed the long pending of Anganwadi and ASHA workers about the increase in their stipend. ‘Anganwadi’ workers will now get Rs 10,000 from Rs 8,325 and ASHA workers will get Rs 5,000 instead of Rs 3500.

Other major announcements:

  • The coverage of the Mahatma Phule Jan Arogya scheme, a health insurance scheme of the government, has been raised from Rs 1.5 lakh to Rs 5 lakh.
  • For the development of tribal students, the state has proposed to upgrade 250 residential tribal schools to new modern schools across the state.
  • The government has proposed Rs 350 cr to celebrate the 350th year of Shivaji Maharaj’s coronation.
  • The state government announced a new scheme ‘Modi Gharkul Awas Yojana’ under which 10 lakh houses will be constructed for Other Backward Classes (OBCs) within three years.
  • To complete the work of 337 km of Metro rail lines in Mumbai, the state government has made a budgetary allocation of Rs 25,788 cr which includes Metro line 10, Metro line 11 & Metro line 12. For the Pune Metro project, Rs 8,313 cr has been allocated.
  • To boost tourism in Shirdi, the state government also intends to build one more passenger terminal at Shirdi airport for which Rs 527 cr has been allotted.

Oppn Calls Budget ‘Scam’; BJP Says ‘All Inclusive Budget’

Maharashtra Pradesh Congress Committee President Nana Patole has said that this budget is meaningless and misleading to the public.

Patole said that the budget is a scam, no section of society has got anything concrete from this budget.

“The announcements made about farmers in the budget are never implemented and they remain only on paper. There is doubt as to how much benefit the farmers will get from these schemes. It has nothing to do with the guaranteed price of agricultural produce. There is not a single word about compensation to farmers in the budget. Whether the farmer pays the premium or the government pays, it doesn’t matter. The manner in which the insurance companies are cheating the farmers by giving no compensation to the farmers.”

Former minister and senior Congress leader Sunil Kedar said this budget is nothing but a ‘Tender Budget’. “They have announced new roads, new flyovers, new highways. So, by floating tenders projects they just want to earn money, nothing else. There is absolutely nothing for the ordinary man & farmers. They are giving additional Rs 6,000 assistance to Farmers which shows what the Centre has given to farmers as aid is not enough.”

Further criticizing the budget, Kedar said the state government has not made the terms and conditions of the crop loan scheme clear to people. “Though they have announced a crop loan scheme, they have not made it clear its terms and conditions and how farmers will benefit from this scheme. I want to ask this government, why does the Gujarat government stop a similar crop insurance scheme?”

BJP leader Atul Bhatkhalkar termed this budget as an ‘all-inclusive’ budget. “This budget has something for everyone. This budget will certainly boost the capital expenditure of the state. This will also help to generate employment in large numbers in the state and encouragement given to the tourism department in the budget will also help to create more jobs for youth within the state.”

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