Patna: The general budget of 2021-2022 does not seem to offer many direct benefits to the state of Bihar. On February 1, Union Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman presented the budget. It included some fund allocations for Bihar prescribed by the Fifteenth Finance Commission.
Bihar allocation of funds includes Rs 35,577 cr for local governance, Rs 7,824 cr for disaster management, Rs 3,223 cr for health, Rs 1694 for road construction, Rs 960 cr for judiciary), Rs 1720 cr for agriculture, and Rs 2267 cr (for state-specific grants), former deputy CM and Rajya Sabha MP, Sushil Kumar Modi stated.
The center has granted Bihar a share of Rs 4,24,926 crore in central taxes as well as Rs. 53,825 crore as state grants. Modi has expressed his gratitude for the generous grants to N.K. Singh, Chairman of the Fifteenth Finance Commission.
Economist at Centre for Economic Policy and Public Finance, Sudhanshu said that Bihar acquires 75% of its total revenue from the Centre. He believes that the recommendations of the Fifteenth Finance Commission are being abided by. But Bihar requires more financial support from the center to meet optimum levels of growth and development. According to him, the states who received major benefits are West Bengal, Tamil Nadu, Kerala.
DM Diwakar claims that Bihar could derive major welfares from hiked wealth allocation in rural and health sectors. Diwakar is a Patna-based economist and a professor of economy at the AN Sinha Institute of Social Studies. He expressed uncertainty in Government’s decision to monetize public undertakings. He also recommended more stress on job creation.
Key takeaways for Bihar (Source: TOI)
“The tax on solar lights has also been increased from 5% to 20%, which can increase the financial burden in the execution of state government’s Seven Resolves component dealing with the installation of solar lights in villages,” he said.
Bihar has found mention in certain areas of the budget as a whole. These include the Amritsar-Kolkata Industrial Corridor Project (AKIC). This involves Integrated Manufacturing Structures (IMCs) distributed across six states along with Bihar. , the Phulpur-Dhamra-Haldia gas pipeline project will be financially backed to boost industrialization in Bihar.