VIJAYAWADA: The Jagan Mohan Reddy government’s welfare schemes get a fresh boost with an increase in fund allocations for them in the AP Budget 2023 presented in the Assembly on Thursday.
Chief Minister Y.S. Jagan Mohan Reddy said the Budget kept in mind both welfare and development aspirations of the people. Taking to Twitter later in the day, the CM said, “The main objectives were to provide good education, good medicine, good health, happiness for farmers, empowerment of my sisters, and speedy industrial development.”
Community Welfare (SC, ST, BC, Minority) gets 27 per cent of the Budget allocations, the DBT Schemes gets 19 per cent funds of the Budget, Education gets 16.87 per cent, women welfare and development 11.4 per cent (based on gender budget), rural development gets 9.19 per cent, Health 8.32 per cent, agriculture 7.36 per cent, Irrigation 6.24 per cent and child welfare gets 4.72 per cent funds of the new state Budget.
According to finance minister Buggana Rajendranath, this year’s Budget has a record low fiscal deficit — pegged at 1.54 per cent. An increase in fund allocations was shown, under which there was a 32.5 per cent increase in BC welfare as compared to the 2022-23 Budget Allocations of Rs 29,143 crore. This has been raised in the present 2023-24 Budget to Rs 38,605 crore.
Further, a 6.6 per cent increase in the allocation for municipal administration & urban development is effected in the Budget 2023-24 compared to the 2022-23 figure (2022-23: Rs 8,796 crore; 2023-23: Rs 9,381 crore).
There is a 6.2 per cent increase in allocation for the roads & buildings department in the 2023-24 Budget, compared to the 2022-23 Budget allocations. (2022-23: Rs 8,581 crore; 2023-24: Rs 9,118 crore).
Budget allocation is increased by 10 per cent for welfare schemes (DBT), which gets the maximum share of the Budget, meaning Rs 54,228 crore (2022-23: Rs 48,882 crore; 2023-24: Rs 54,228 crore).
The 7 per cent increase in allocations for the education sector meant a rise from Rs 30,077 crore in 2022-23 to Rs 32,198 crore in 2023-24.
A 3.2 per cent increase in the allocations for the health sector showed a rise from Rs 15,384 crore in 2022-23 to Rs 15,882 crore in 2023-24.
Further, a 3 per cent increase in the allocations for the agriculture sector saw a rise from Rs 13,630 crore in 2022-23 to Rs 14,043 crore in 2023-24.
Finance minister Rajendranath, education minister Satyaranarayana and BC welfare minister Venugopalakrishna said the Budget focused on welfare and sustained development.
Rajendranath said welfare has taken a lion’s share of the Budget allocations — with YSR pensions getting Rs 21,434.72 crore and the total Direct Benefit Transfer (DBT) running into Rs 54,228.36 crore this time.
Satyanarayana said that in the education sector, Amma Vodi gets a major chunk of Rs 6,500crore while the Jagananna Vidya Deevena, Jagananna Vasathi Deevena, Jagananna Vidya Kanuka and Mana Badi Nadu-Nedu are allotted Rs 2,841.64crore, Rs 2,200crore, Rs 560crore and Rs 3500 crore respectively.
Minister Venugopalakrishna said the annual budget showed its commitment for economic empowerment of the weaker sections of the society by allotting Rs 38,605 crore for BC component, Rs 20,005crore for SC component, Rs 6,929crore for ST component, Rs 4887 crore for Kapu welfare and Rs 4,203 crore for minority welfare.
Health minister Vidadala Rajini said that recognising the importance of priority sectors, the Budget has allotted Rs 15,882 crore for medical, health and family welfare.
Some Rs 15, 873crore was allotted for panchayat raj and rural development, Rs 9,381 crore for municipal and urban development, ` 6700 crore for YSR Asara, Rs 5,000 crore for YSR Cheyuta and Rs 1,600 crore for YSR-PM Bima Yojana.
With an intention to boost developmental efforts, roads and buildings sector was allotted `9118 crore, water resources (Irrigation) Rs 11,908 crore, environment, forest, science and technology Rs 685 crore, energy Rs 6456 crore and village and ward secretariats Rs 3,858 crore.
While Industry and Commerce was allotted Rs 2602 crore, YSR Rythu Bharosa got Rs 4,020 crore. The allotment of Rs 5,600 crore for housing for the poor will boost the construction sector across the state, while tourism, culture and youth development will get a facelift with the allotment of Rs 1291 crore, the government claimed.
With an allotment of Rs 1166 crore for skill development, more youth will get opportunities to learn new skills. The other major allocations are Rs 3000crore for price stabilization, Rs 1000crore for zero interest loans for DWCRA associations and Rs 1212 crore for agricultural mechanization.
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