MUZAFFARABAD: Azad Jammu and Kashmir (AJK) government Thursday announced its budget for the fiscal year 2020-21 with a development outlay of Rs. 24.5 billion, same of the current fiscal year showing the total volume of Rs. 139.5 billion without any deficit.
Minister for Health and Finance Dr. Najeeb Naqi presented the budget for coming fiscal year and revised estimates for current fiscal year in the legislative Assembly session conducted following the SOPs of social distancing in the wake of COVID – 19.
The total income for the fiscal year 2020/21 has been estimated Rs. 115 billion compared to the current fiscal years estimate of Rs. 97 billion which shrunk to Rs. 94 billion in the revised estimates of current fiscal year presented in the house. The current expenditures for the coming fiscal year are estimated Rs. 115 billion same as estimates of income and the development expenditures of Rs. 24.5 would be provided from federal government in the form of grants.
The government itself would collect Rs. 28.5 billion out of which Rs.20.6 billion in the head of income tax and Rs. 7.9 billion in the head of other taxes and share from FBR taxes is estimated Rs. 70 billion, Rs. 19.9 billion are estimated from the state revenue and Rs. 670 million in the head of use charges from the federal government.
In the head of current expenditure, a huge amount of Rs. 28.88 billion has been allocated for education department; Rs. 22 billion has been allocated for the payment of pension to retired employees, Rs. 10 billion has been allocated for health department, an amount of Rs. 16.524 billion has been allocated in the head of miscellaneous expenditures (grants) while Rs. 8.762 billion has been allocated for electricity department.
In the development expenditures, the biggest amount of Rs. 10.2 billion has been allocated for roads and communication network, more than Rs.2.57 for education, Rs. 2.795 for local government and rural development, Rs. 2.155 billion for housing and physical planning, Rs. 1.7 billion for power development and one billion rupees for development schemes of health department.
The finance minister in his budget speech said that 72 percent development funds in the coming fiscal year budget had been allocated for ongoing development schemes and 28 percent were allocated for new development schemes and claimed that 119 schemes had been completed during the current fiscal year and a target of the completion of 190 ongoing schemes had been fixed in the coming budget.
He said in the coming fiscal year development budget, 72 percent funds had been allocated for infrastructure development, 9 % for social sectors and 19 percent for growth related sectors and informed the house that federal Ministry of Kashmir affairs will also spend Rs. 2.92 billion on ongoing development schemes in the region during the coming fiscal year.
Dr. Naqi further said that in addition to this development portray, a scheme worth Rs. 3.64 billion had also been added in federal government’s annual development program for the rehabilitation of the people affected by Indian firing on line of control (LOC).