Hailing the budget for the Union Territory of Jammu and Kashmir as a visionary, the bussiness community of the Union Territory observed that the budget will boost socio-economic growth of this region.
President of the Chamber of Commerce and Industries (CCI) Jammu, Arun Gupta said that the budget is going to support economic activities in J&K. He said that the government has taken many steps to encourage industrial growth in the Union Territory.
Echoing in a similar voice, vice-president of the Bari-Brahama Industrial Association, Ajay Langer said the proposal of the government to set up 1500 new industrial units in the rural area was a revolutionary step that is going to provide employment opportunities to the youth of rural belts of J&K.
Union Minister of State for Finance Pankaj Chaudhary on Monday presented Rs 1,18,500 crore worth annual budget for the financial year of 2023-24 for Jammu and Kashmir in the Parliament, an increase of Rs 5500 crore over the current fiscal with focus on good governance, grassroots democracy, agriculture, investments and industrial growth, employment, and women empowerment. Chaudhary tabled the budget in Lok Sabha on behalf of Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman.
J&K economy is on the right track
The Minister said that the economy of J&K is on the right track and the government is focusing on equitable growth in all sectors of the economy. The economy is expected to grow at 10% and there has been significant growth in collections under GST, Excise and Stamp Duty.
The GST collection is Rs 6666.04 crore up to February, 2023; which has shown a growth of 14.64 percent over the same period of the previous financial year 2021-22. The MST collection is Rs. 1444.45 crores up to ending February 2023.
The stamp collection is Rs. 438.88 crores up to February 2023 against Rs 401.44 crore during the last financial year 2021-22; showing a growth of 9.33 percent.
The excise collection has been Rs 1658.35 crore up to ending of February 2023 during the current financial year 2022-23 against 1443.07 crores in the same period during the last financial year 2021-22; registering a growth of 14.92 %. The overall tax collection has shown significant growth and resilience.
The priorities for the Budget of the Union Territory of Jammu & Kashmir for the year 2023-24 shall be based on the underlying themes:
- Good Governance.
- Strengthening Grass-root Democracy.
- Promoting Sustainable Agriculture.
- Facilitating Investment & Industrial Growth.
- Employment Generation.
- Accelerated Development & Inclusive Growth.
- Women Empowerment.
- Social Inclusion.
- Doubling GDP within five years.
The budget 2023-24 for Jammu and Kashmir shall again cross Rs 1 lakh crore mark, an indicator of our commitment to make Jammu and Kashmir a model of development. The total budget estimates for the fiscal is Rs. 1,18,500 crore, of which developmental expenditure is of the order of Rs. 41,491 crore.
The capital component of the budget has increased substantially.
The expected revenue receipts are Rs 1,06,061 crore whereas Revenue expenditure is expected to be Rs 77,009 crore, thereby making available revenue surplus for capital expenditure to the tune of Rs 29,052 crore.
The Capital Receipts are projected at Rs 12,439 crore and Capital Expenditure is expected to the tune of Rs 41,491 crore. 35% of the earmarked Budget shall be spent on development and infrastructure projects.
In the written budget speech, Sitharaman said total budget estimates for 2023-24 are Rs 1,18,500 crore including developmental expenditure of Rs 41,491 crore. The budget for next financial year has gone up by Rs 5550 crore as it was Rs 1,12,950 crore for current fiscal year of 2022-23.
No new taxes have been proposed in the budgetary proposals. The Security Related Expenditure in Jammu and Kashmir has been pegged at Rs 1197 crore.
Capital component of the budget has increased substantially. Expected revenue receipts are Rs 1,06,061 crore while revenue expenditure is expected to be Rs 77,009 crore, which will make J&K revenue surplus for capital expenditure to the tune of Rs 29,052 crore.
J&K witnesses historic changes after August 5, 2019
The Finance Minister said that the Union Territory of Jammu and Kashmir has witnessed an unprecedented level of development in various sectors since historic changes in August, 2019.
"The people of Jammu and Kashmir not only welcomed but have embraced these changes with an open heart. The law and order situation has improved appreciably. The pace of development in all critical sectors such as power, tourism, road connectivity, urban sector, health, sports, water, and rural development, etc, is remarkable", she said.
"Jammu and Kashmir has entered the Amrit Kaal with the aim of a fear-free, corruption-free, drug-free, and employment-rich Jammu and Kashmir inspired by Panch Pran i.e Goal of developed India, Remove any trace of the colonial mindset, Take pride in our roots, Unity, and Sense of duty among the citizens, she said.