FM presents Rs 1.18 lakh cr budget for UT; 35 pc expenditure on development, infra projects

‘People of J&K have embraced Aug 2019 changes with open heart’
Budgetary provision for Metro Rail in Jammu, Srinagar
PRIs, ULBs get Rs 1313 cr; JJM Rs 5000 cr, KPs Rs 400 cr
Economy on right track, will grow by 10%; increase in taxes
Ladies Haats, Women Markets, Pink Taxis proposed
Sanjeev Pargal

JAMMU, Mar 13: Union Minister of State for Finance Pankaj Chaudhary today presented Rs 1,18,500 crore worth annual budget for financial year of 2023-24 for Jammu and Kashmir in the Parliament, an increase of Rs 5500 crore over 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.

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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.
“Of total receipts of 2023-24 estimated at Rs 1,18,500 crore; Rs 1,06,061 crore are revenue receipts, Rs 12,439 crore capital receipts and Rs 30,000 crore are Ways and Means Advances. The own revenues both tax and non-tax are estimated to be Rs 34,942 crore. In addition to this, Rs 35,581 crore will flow as Central assistance,” the Finance Minister said.
Sitharaman said 35 percent of budget shall be spent on development and infrastructure projects.
The Finance Minister listed priorities for Jammu and Kashmir in the annual budget as good governance, strengthening of grassroots democracy, promoting sustainable agriculture, facilitating investment and industrial growth, employment generation, accelerated development and inclusive growth, women empowerment, social inclusion and doubling Gross Domestic Product (GDP) within five years.
“Jammu and Kashmir has entered the `Amrit Kaal with the aim of a fear-free, corruption-free, drug-free and employment-rich inspired by `Panch Pran’ i.e. goal of developed India, remove and trace of colonial mindset, take pride in our roots and unity and sense of duty among the citizens,” Sitharaman said.
She added that J&K has witnessed unprecedented level of development in various sectors since historic changes in August 2019 (a reference towards abrogation of special status of erstwhile State and its bifurcation into two UTs of J&K and Ladakh).
“People of Jammu and Kashmir not only welcomed but have embraced these changes with open heart. The law and order situation has improved appreciably. Pace of development in all critical sectors such as power, tourism, road connectivity, urban sector, health, sports, water and rural development is remarkable,” Sitharaman said.
She announced that Kashmir will be connected with rest of the country through rail network by the end of 2023.
The Government also plans to roll out light metro rail in Jammu and Srinagar during the next financial year.
The Finance Minister said Jammu and Kashmir’s economy is also on right track and it is expected to grow at 10 percent. There has been significant growth in collections under GST, Excise and Stamp Duty, she added.
The budget has a provision of Rs 1313 crore for Panchayati Raj Institutions (PRIs) and Urban Local Bodies (ULBs), Rs 5000 crore for Jal Jeevan Mission (JJM), Rs 140 crore for Metro Corporations, Rs 100 crore for Jammu and Srinagar City grants, Rs 400 crore for construction of transit accommodation for Kashmiri migrants, Rs 520 crore for Smart City projects under the Centrally Sponsored Schemes and UT sector, Rs 200 crore including Rs 10 crore each earmarked as Development Fund for 20 District Development Councils and Rs 71.25 crore at the rate of Rs 25 lakh each as Development Fund for 285 Block Development Councils, Rs 40 crore for Panchayati Raj Institutions Security and Rs 120 crore for establishment of DDC/BDC/PRI accommodation and offices.
“The tax/GDP ratio is projected at 8.82 per cent for 2023-24 which is higher than the previous year of 7.77 per cent,” Sitharaman said.
She said the debt/GDP ratio for 2023-24 was pegged as 49 per cent and the GDP growth for the Union territory for 2023-24 has been projected at Rs 2,30,727 crore which shows a growth of 10 per cent over the previous year.
All 18.36 lakh households of Jammu and Kashmir will have functional tap connections by 2023-24, Sitharaman said, adding that every household will be provided drinking water with minimum 55 litres per capita per day and of prescribed quality on regular, long term and sustainable basis.
The Finance Minister has allocated Rs 2,526.74 crore to Agriculture and Horticulture; Rs 2,097.53 crore to Health and Medical Education; Rs 4,169.26 crore to Rural Department; Rs 1,964.90 crore to Power sector; Rs 7,161 crore to Jal Shakti; Rs 2,928.04 crore to Housing and Urban Development; Rs 1,521.87 crore to Education; and Rs 4,062.87 crore to construction of roads and bridges.
As per the budget document, total revenue budget of Administrative sector is Rs 14069 crore of which 73 percent is expected to be spent on Home department. Similarly, the total revenue budget of Social sector is Rs 24,580 crore, of which, expenditure to the extent of 49 percent will be done on Education.
Total Revenue budget of Infrastructure sector is Rs 32973 crore and 71 percent will be spent through the finance Department.
In Administrative sector, Capital budget is Rs 1802 crore. Out of this, 44 percent will be spent on Home Department. In Rs 5023 crore Capital budget of social sector, 42 percent will be spent on Health and Medical Education Department.
In Infrastructure, total capital budget is Rs 26013 crore and 22 percent of it will be used by the Jal Shakti Department. In Economic sector, total capital budget stood at Rs 8654 crore and 48 percent expenditure will be done by the Rural Development Department
Sitharaman said J&K has been among top performers in the country for implementation of Pradhan Mantri Gram Sadak Yojana (PMGSY), Amrit Sarovar, SVAMITVA Scheme, Azadi Ka Amrit Mahotsav, Nasha Mukt Abhiyan and renewable energy development.
“Besides, Jammu and Kashmir is among top performers in agriculture income, ease of living, ease of doing business, transparency, sustainable development goals and one nation, one ration card,” read the speech.
The Finance Minister said that Jammu and Kashmir leads the nation under various health parameters like neo-natal mortality rate, infant mortality rate, sex ratio at birth, institutional births and percentage of fully immunized children.
She further said that Jammu & Kashmir government has made concerted efforts to introduce multitude of reforms like establishment of grassroots level democracy, creation of knowledge society and expansion of digital and physical connectivity.
“More than 445 services are now being provided in online mode in Jammu and Kashmir. Offline services have been completely stopped thus ushering a new digital era in Jammu and Kashmir,” the budget speech read.
The Finance Minister also said that the Union Territory of Jammu and Kashmir is the first among States/Union Territories to have district good governance Index for assessing the public service delivery at district level.
“Two new unique initiatives “Aspirational Panchayat Development Programme” with an objective to provide financial assistance of Rs. 10.00 Lakh to selected 285 Panchayats (one Panchayat per Block) for their holistic development and “Aspirational Towns Development Programme” for holistic development of selected Aspirational Towns has been launched during 2022-23. A Panchayat Development Index and Town Development Index have also been developed to measure the progress,” she said.
“Road infrastructure by way of construction of mega highways and tunnel projects is in progress. A number of highway projects are presently under execution. Work on Srinagar-Jammu national highway is being completed in next 2-3 years bringing much respite for the people of Jammu & Kashmir,” she added.
She said that power generation capacity will be doubled in 3 years. “In last 2 years alone, projects of more than 3000 MW capacity have been revived and put on track. Work on 1000 MW Pakal Dul and 624 MW Kiru is in full swing. 850 MW Ratle has been awarded. Preconstruction activities have been initiated for 1856 MW Sawalkote project by NHPC,” she said.
Talking about employment, the Finance Minister said that largest- ever recruitment drive has been initiated in Jammu & Kashmir. “33426 Posts have been referred to recruiting agencies, against which 25450 selections have been made including 2436 selections of Jammu and Kashmir Bank Limited. Remaining are under process for fast track recruitment,” she said.
Sitharaman said over 1.88 core tourists visited Jammu and Kashmir during previous year up to December, 2022. “Out of this 26.73 lakh tourists visited Kashmir which is more than double than the previous highest of 12.99 lakh in the year 2016. For the first time, the world famous Gulmarg Gondola has realized revenue of about Rs. 100 crore,” she said.
In a major push for agriculture and horticulture sectors, Rs 1239.45 crore has been allocated more to it than the previous year’s budget allocation. “For agriculture and horticulture sectors, an allocation of about Rs. 2526.74 crore has been made under capital expenditure for the year 2023-24 which is Rs. 1239.45 crore more than previous year’s budget allocation,” read the budget documents.
The Jammu & Kashmir Holistic Agriculture Development Plan will be rolled out which will make horizontal change in the agriculture sector in the Union Territory of Jammu and Kashmir. “Under this plan, 29 projects have been approved with an outlay of Rs 5,012 crore over a period of next five years. This will transform the agriculture economy of Jammu and Kashmir putting it on a new trajectory of growth, doubling the output of sectors, boosting exports and making the sectors sustainable and commercially viable,” the budget document stated.
“It will herald a new phase of farming prosperity and rural livelihood security in Jammu and Kashmir and create additional job opportunities to 2, 87,910 people in agriculture and allied sectors. 18,861 new business enterprises will be created over the period of next five years”, the budget documents said.
The Health and Medical Education sector has been allocated Rs 2097.53 crore under capital expenditure for the year 2023-24, which is Rs 214.97 crore more than the previous year’s budget allocation.
“For rural sector, an allocation of about Rs. 4169.26 crore has been made under capital expenditure for the year 2023-24,” the document stated.
An allocation of about Rs. 1964.90 crore has been made under capital expenditure for Power sector.
“For tourism and culture sectors, an allocation of about Rs 457.39 crore has been made under capital expenditure for the year 2023-24 which is Rs 54.31 crore more than previous year’s budget allocation,” the document stated.
The Jal Shakti department has been allocated Rs 7161 crore under capital expenditure for 2023-24, which is Rs. 3191 crore more the previous year’s budget allocation.
In the budget, an allocation of about Rs. 2928.04 crore has been made under capital expenditure for Housing & Urban Development Department for the year 2023-24 which is Rs. 674.78 crore more than the previous year’s budget allocation.
An allocation of about Rs 1521.87 crore has been made under capital expenditure for School Education and Higher Education sectors for the year 2023-24, which is Rs 193.61 crore more than the previous year’s budget allocation.
The road and bridge sector will get an allocation of about Rs 4062.87 crore under capital expenditure for the year 2023-24, which is Rs 98.99 crore more than the previous year’s budget allocation.
The Centre has also proposed several security-related activities which will be taken up during the next fiscal.
The police border posts will be set-up in all the border districts of Jammu and Kashmir.
The budget document talked about strengthening of crime organization in J&K.
As part of security measures for jails, the budget proposed construction and erection of dominant towers/jammers in jails.
The Government said that CCTV surveillance systems will be completed in all police stations and police Posts.
It also talks about installation of CCTV cameras with command and control centres at public places.
Aiming to empower womenfolk in Jammu & Kashmir, the Union Territory’s budget for the next fiscal has unveiled a slew of measures for women-led development.
The budget document, spoke about establishing “Ladies Haat” and “Ladies Exclusive Markets” at Srinagar and other major towns.
The budget document also stated that women guides would be encouraged at tourist places.
In the budget document, the government also talked about the creation of hubs for the empowerment of women (HEW)-Mahila Shakti Kendras, the establishment of GPS-enabled women helpline and the construction of working women hostels.
It referred to setting up of women-led Farmer Producer Organizations (FPOs) in the Cooperative sector.
In a move aimed at providing safe commute options for the womenfolk, the budget proposed the introduction of buses and pink taxis for them.
It also talks about women-only bus drivers and conductors
The budget for proposed that the Higher Education Council would be made functional during the next fiscal.
“Jammu and Kashmir is one of the front runners in adoption of National Education Policy (NEP) and will be fully implemented in the year 2023-24,” the budget said.
“National Assessment and Accreditation Council (NAAC) accreditation of 32 colleges will be completed in 2023-24,” it read.
It also stated that ‘ERP e-Gov Suite, will be fully implemented in 2023-24 with an aim at managing HRM, estate and inventory of Government Colleges and creating a centralized admission with student life cycle.
“Higher Education Council to be made functional during 2023-24. Eight college buildings and four hostel buildings likely to be completed in 2023-24,” it read.
The document further stated that in Jammu and Kashmir four auditoriums and four multipurpose halls are likely to be completed in 2023-24. Besides, two library blocks are also likely to be completed in this financial year.
According to the Jammu and budget document “88 Virtual Reality Labs in the Union Territory of Jammu and Kashmir that includes one lab in each zone to inculcate the scientific temper among students.”
“At least 40 Robotic Labs to be established including two labs in each district to help in improving the school’s digital equity, literacy and economic development besides, new teaching methodologies,” it said.
It also said that Yoga training for all the students to keep them fit should be introduced as part of co-curricular activities.

v Rs 900 crore kept for Holistic Agriculture Development Scheme.
v Rs 120 crore for Crop Insurance Scheme.
v Rs 500 crore provisioned for GST re-imbursement.
v Rs 200 crore earmarked for ‘Mission Youth Programme’.
v Provision of Rs 100 crore for capitalization of Banks.
v Rs 20 crore for establishment of Highway Resting Places.
v Provision of Rs 300 crore under CRIF, Rs 1600 crore under PMGSY and Rs 1000 crore under NABARD scheme.
v Rs 40 crore for tourism promotion.
v Rs 60 crore for new circuits including Mansar, Surinsar & Sufi Circuit and identified Religious Circuits during year 2023-24.
v Rs 400 crore for land development in Industrial Estates.
v Rs 100 crore for development of new townships/mass housing.
v Rs 120 crore for establishment of DDC/BDC/PRI accommodation and offices.
v Rs 5000 crore provisioned for Jal Jeevan Mission. All districts will be covered under “Har Ghar Nal Se Jal”.
v e-Office in all offices, Panchayats & DDCs/BDCs.
v Rs 40 crore for PRI Security.
v Rs 50 crore for construction of bunkers.
v Rs 1313 crore for PRIs/ULBs.
v Rs 200 crore @ Rs 10 crore each earmarked as ‘Development Fund’ for 20 DDCs and Rs 71.25 crore @ Rs 25 lakh each as ‘Development Fund’ for 285 BDCs.
v Rs 40 crore provisioned for improving Quality in Schools.
v Rs 25 crore for construction of pathway around Wular Lake.
v Rs 90 crore for Dal Development.
v Rs 140 crore for Metro Corporations.
v Rs 100 crore for Jammu and Srinagar City Grants.
v Rs 150 crore for City Sustainable/ Infrastructure Development Fund.
v Rs 400 crore for construction of Transit Accommodations for Kashmiri Migrants.
v Rs 520 crore for Smart City Projects under CSS and Union Territory Sector.
v Rs 399 crore have been provisioned for AB-PMJAY SEHAT Scheme.
v Rs 75 crore provisioned for welfare of Scheduled Tribes.
v Rs 2 crore have been provided for Devika Project.