Capital Worry: Schemes need Rs 85 – 90K crore fund in 2019-20 Odisha Budget

For the game-changer schemes like KALIA, BSKY, Aama Gaon, Aama Bikas and the sops to SHGs, the budget 2019-20 has to arrange around a whopping Rs 53,000 crore

Bhubaneswar: As the countdown to the budget 2019-20 has started ticking,  the State Finance Department seems to have gone into a huddle to meet the gigantic fund requirement to the tune of Rs 85,000 to Rs 90,000 crore for a string of schemes announced by the State Government during the pre-election year.

For the game-changer schemes like KALIA, BSKY, Aama Gaon, Aama Bikas and the sops to SHGs, the budget 2019-20 has to arrange around a whopping Rs 53,000 crore.

In addition, the budget 2019-20 has to allocate another around Rs 35,000 crore so as to provide the matching grants for the centrally sponsored schemes like National Rural Health Mission (NRHM), National Urban Health Mission (NUHM), Ayushman Bharat, Sarva Shiksya Abhiyan (SSA), RUSA et al.

It needs mentioning that the Budget 2018-19 had made provision of Rs 62,000 crore for both the State and Central schemes. The budget had appropriated a sum of Rs 34,770 crore for State schemes and Rs 27,230 crore for the Centrally Sponsored Schemes (CSS). Top sources in the Finance Department revealed that the total allocation for the schemes in 2019-20 will see a nearly 42 per cent spike.

Sources further disclosed that the departments like Health, Rural development, Drinking water, Agriculture, Housing & Urban Development department have placed huge fund requirements in order to meet the needs for the host of schemes these departments now administer.

In the budget 2018-19, the agriculture department had seen the maximum rise of around 25 per cent in allocation; whereas the maximum drop of around 27 per cent in allocation was witnessed in the Rural Development department.

The pet programme of CM Naveen Patnaik ‘Aama Gaon, Aama Bikash’ had seen allocation Rs 1,250 crore in 2018-19 budget, the budget 2019-20 will hike the allocation for the scheme to around Rs 1,900 crore, sources informed.

Why the State Finance Department is in a huddle? As State has a little elbow room to effect a rise in State’s own resources in such a short span of time, the Finance department has to meet the fund needs via market borrowings, central grants and central tax devolution only.

The nagging fact for the State Finance department is the ballooning of debt repayment. Sources informed that the debt repayment in 2019-20 will touch around Rs 11, 690 crore vis-a-vis of Rs 9,657 crore in 2018-19. Rising debt liability is not a good sign in prudent fiscal management.

It’s in this context the missive of Chief Secretary Aditya Padhi to CEO Ayushman Bharat for tweaking in the grant-in-aid for Odisha health sector assumes significance.