JK Assembly passes Rs 95666.97 Cr Budget for 2018-19
JAMMU: The Legislative Assembly Saturday passed Rs 95666.97 crore budget for J&K for the year 2018-19 with 20% step up over the last year’s budget size of Rs 79472 crore.
The Jammu and Kashmir Appropriation Bill-2018 moved by the Finance Minister Dr Haseeb Drabu in the House in this regard was passed with voice-vote.
Pertinently, for the first time in J&K’s legislative history, the Finance Minister has linked the Appropriation Bill with wide-ranging expenditure reforms to ensure checks and balances for efficient fiscal management and speed up spending to make productive use of resources for the larger public good.
Earlier, Dr Drabu had, on January 11 this year, presented the Budget proposals for 2018-19 in the House, comprising a revenue component of Rs 51244.72 crore and capital component of Rs 44422.24 crore.
The Finance Minister made it clear that the funds shall be spent only on the approved items of the expenditure and strictly for the purpose they have been released. “There shall be no re-appropriation of funds except where the departments have spent 55% of funds received ending December 2017,” he said and added that however, where their spending levels are below 55%, the remaining 70% funds shall lapse to the Government.
He said the expenditure during the last quarter shall be restricted to not more than 30% of the Revised Estimates. “Treasury officers shall have an added responsibility to ensure that the departments are held responsible to the above expenditure ceiling,” he said.
“I express gratitude to the members of this august house, from both the treasury and non-treasury benches for putting across valuable suggestions on how to further improve the expenditure policy and ensure productive use of the resources in the larger interest of the State and its people,” he said and added that the fiscal reforms introduced over the past three years are aimed at bringing stabilization in JK’s economy and reduce volatility for economic revival through enhanced investments, public expenditure and widening the net of socio-economic security.
The Legislators, cutting across the political divide, hailed the extraordinary expenditure reforms outlined by the Finance Minister in the Appropriation Bill to ensure fiscal discipline and speedy and productive use of resources for the larger public good.