Budget 2013: After Bansal, Chidambaram too dashes hopes of state

Benefits of the centrally sponsored schemes apart, Maharashtra is not getting much from the union budget for the fiscal year 2013-14, presented yesterday by P Chidambaram. In way of relief to states for UPA government’s decision to slash Central Sales Tax (CST), Maharashtra will be receiving Rs 557 crore as its share.

Highlights of Budget 2013-14

Nothing to celebrate: A message board outside a church shows how most Mumbaikars feel about the budget. Pic/Suresh KK

Most significantly, the budget is silent on major developing and proposed infrastructure projects in Mumbai and other key cities such as Pune and Nagpur. Similarly, the state was expecting financial provision for prompt conclusion of irrigation projects such as Gosikhurd in Vidarbha region.

Maharashtra, according to finance department officials, will get slices of the additional Rs 200 crore being apportioned for schemes related to women and child development, and the Rs 1,000-crore Nirbhaya fund, announced by the union finance minister. All states will get an equal share. Maharashtra is also likely to collect a sizeable chunk from the Rs 15,000-crore special provisions for drinking water supply, and Rs 1,500 crore for clean drinking water projects, as announced yesterday, said an official.

Municipal corporations from the state will get central funds for power generation plants based on solid waste, and rural parts will benefit through the Pradhan Mantri Gram Sadak Yojana (PMGSY). An important declaration in the union budget is about centrally sponsored schemes, whose number has been trimmed to 70 from the present 173.

Meanwhile, deputy CM Ajit Pawar, who also heads the state finance and planning department, reacted cautiously, terming the union budget ‘people-friendly, as it will help the growth of the state and the nation, and is also beneficial for the poor and working class’, referring to various schemes announced for them.

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