Nagaland CM presents Rs 1,630.67-crore deficit budget

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Kohima, March 23 (IANS) Tabling a Rs 1630.67 crore deficit budget for 2018-19, Nagaland Chief Minister Neiphiu Rio on Friday announced setting up of a central monitoring mechanism to ensure successful implementation of the Government’s policies, programmes and projects in the state.

Presenting the first budget of the People’s Democratic Alliance government, Rio estimated total receipt at Rs 18,232.51 crore and total expenditure at Rs 18,305.40 crore for 2018-19.

“The main reason for the negative balance (deficit) is on account of the implementation of Revision of Pay 2017, which will have a huge additional burden besides the negative opening balance of Rs 1607.73 crore,” he explained.

Rio, who also holds the finance portfolio, proposed a development expenditure of Rs. 4552.36 crore out of which Central-sponsored Schemes (CSS) is projected at Rs 3,567.36 crore.

The Chief Minister informed the members of the assembly that the central government is likely to consider 100 per cent CSS funding in respect of hill states, particularly for the North-East.

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He said the monitoring mechanism — Project Management Board — will ensure periodical monitoring of all schemes and projects for successful implementation and timely delivery.

Promising that the government will provide good governance, transparency and accountability in the administration and to remove VIP culture, the Chief Minister said that his government will also use modern information technology tools to improve governance and increase the adoption of e-governance at all levels.

To improve the overall quality of roads for a “Connected Nagaland”, Rio said the first priority of the government is to start the repair and maintenance of roads in the state capital and district headquarters within 60 days for which an amount of Rs. 50 crore has been provided.

“A total of Rs. 168.64 crore has been earmarked under Non-Development Plans for maintenance of existing government assets including roads. It will be ensured that this amount is judiciously distributed on the basis of actual requirements,” Rio announced.

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The Chief Minister said the government is also committed to take definite steps to improve rail and air connectivity for the people of our state, which will have significant impact on Nagaland’s economic growth and developmental process.

Noting that rural development sector will be to transform and elevate the lives of all rural people with gainful employments, Rio said: “Implementation of MNREGA will ensure not only job creation but also creation of durable community assets. Rural employment will further be supplemented through skill development and Rural Livelihoods programmes by having convergence with schemes that promote arts and crafts as also animal husbandry, poultry and piggery.”

In order to attract investments from Private Sector and multilateral agencies in the state, Rio proposed to set up the institution of Nagaland Investment and Development Authority. It will aggressively pursue investment projects, infrastructure development and take up measures that contribute towards economic growth in a sustainable manner that is acquainted and adaptable to the situation.

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He said the details of the Nagaland Investment and Development Authority and its structure will be announced soon.

Rio also proposed to introduce a new package of study tours and excursions that will take students on exposure trips to different parts of the country especially the National Capital Region.

“Every year 100 students will be sponsored to visit New Delhi and other cities to get real life experience of visiting places like the Rashtrapati Bhawan, Parliament house, Taj Mahal, etc., in separate batches,” he said.

–IANS

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