Bhubaneswar, June 28 (IANS) Odisha Finance Minister Niranjan Pujari on Friday presented a Rs 1.39 lakh crore annual budget for the year 2019-20 with focus on agriculture, women empowerment and cyclone Fani restoration work.
The budget is about 15.8 per cent more than the annual budget for 2018-19. The state is expected to grow in the range of 8 per cent to 8.5 per cent during 2019-20.
Pujari also presented a separate agriculture budget with an outlay of Rs 20,714 crore.
Rs 5,611 crore has been allocated under the Krushak Assistance for Livelihood and Income Augmentation (KALIA) scheme, which will benefit 75 lakh farmers.
The KALIA scheme, which provides financial, livelihood and cultivation support to small, marginal and landless farmers, is attributed to have proved a major vote gainer in the recently concluded general and assembly elections for the ruling Biju Janata Dal (BJD).
Besides, the government has proposed Rs 800 crore in the budget for interest subsidy/subvention on crop loan during 2019-20.
Similarly, Rs 100 crore has been earmarked for Gangadhar Meher Lift Canal System, Rs 1,777 crore for Parbati Giri Mega Lift Irrigation Scheme and Rs 146 crore for Nabakrushna Choudhury Secha Unayana Yojana.
The budget has allocated Rs 2,442 crore for empowerment of women, who have been a constant vote bank for the Naveen Patnaik government in the 19 years of governance in the state.
A provision of Rs 305 crore has been made under the MAMATA scheme, a maternity benefit programme. Rs 301 crore has been allocated under the Mukhyamantri Mahila Sashaktikaran Yojana for financial assistance to women self-help groups (SHGs) and their federations under Mission Shakti.
Rs 130 crore has also been allocated for construction of Mission Shakti Gruha at the gram panchayat level.
Besides, the annual assistance for women members has been raised from Rs 7 lakh to Rs 10 lakh under the Biju Swasthya Kalyan Yojana (BSKY). Pujari has proposed to provide Rs 1,203 crore for the scheme.
As the coastal areas of the state has been devastated by cyclone Fani, Rs 4,600 crore has been provided for disaster management, including Rs 909 crore under the State Disaster Response Fund and Rs 3,691 crore under the National Disaster Response Fund.