Vantage point

Thursday, July 08, 2004

Explain, Chids!!

How can you do this -

  • Government proposes to wipe out revenue deficit by 2007/08 against 2008/09 target set in the Fiscal Responsibility and Budget Management Act.

    while you do this -

  • Rs 3,500 crore subsidy for Antodaya scheme under which, foodgrains would be provided for the poorest of the poor.
  • Irrigation programmes to be restructured to complete the projects. Rs 2300 crore (Rs 23 billion) provided for accelerated rural development programme.
  • One lakh irrigation units will be revamped using assistance from NABARD. Fifty per cent subsidy will be provided for such schemes.
  • On scheduled castes welfare programme, an allocation of Rs 1,180 crore has been proposed, marking an increase of Rs 1,137 crore.
  • For welfare programmes of Scheduled Tribes, allocation of Rs 1,146 crore has been proposed. It marks an increase of Rs 1,087 crore.
  • Budget proposes to increase the subsidy under the Health Insurance Scheme. For individuals it has been raised to Rs 200, Rs 300 for a family of five, and Rs 400 for a family of seven.
  • Rs 8000 crore for Rural Infrastructure Development fund to be provided.
  • Equity support of Rs 14,194 crore and loan of Rs 2132 crore to be given to the PSEs including the Railways during 2004-05.

    ........... and many many other sops!

    Surely, the cess on my salary won't cover all this, and wipe out the fiscal deficit?