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No new taxes in Maharashtra Budget

Our Bureau Mumbai | Updated on March 06, 2020 Published on March 06, 2020

Maharashtra Finance minister Ajit Pawar (right) and Minister of State for Finance Shambhuraj Desai with Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray stand in front of Chhatrapati Shivaji's statue at Vidhan Bhavan before presenting Budget on Friday   -  Vivek Bendre

However, ₹1 to be levied on sale of fuel; mop-up to be used to fight climate change

The Shiv Sena led government presented its first Budget on Friday with a revenue deficit of ₹9,511 crore. The Budget for fiscal 2020-21 has pegged revenue receipt at an estimated ₹3,47,457 crore and the revenue expenditure at ₹3,56, 968 crore.

Finance Minister of Maharashtra, Ajit Pawar, presenting the first Budget of the Maha Vikas Aghadi coalition in the Legislative Assembly, said that due to the general economic slowdown, Maharashtra’s economy has also been affected. Due to this downtrend, many businesses are facing financial difficulties and the number of unemployed is increasing. The slowdown in auto, construction, information technology, telecommunication, banking, textile and other sectors adversely has affected the Indian economy. The coronavirus (Covid -19) stress on the global economy has also added to domestic woes, he said.

He pointed that the expected share of Maharashtra in central taxes, following the recommendations of the 14th Finance Commission, has come down from ₹44,672 crore to ₹36,220 crore in the revised estimates of 2019-20. Therefore, the amount that the State would get from the Central Government has decreased by ₹8,453 crore.

Every two months, the State government receives the GST compensation from the central government under the Goods and Services Tax Act, 2017.

However, there is a delay in getting GST compensation from the Central government.

As a result, timely funding of expenditure on development works in the State is becoming difficult, he said.

There are no new taxes in the budget except for ₹1 that would be levied as additional Value Added Tax (VAT) on the sale of petrol and diesel in the State. This additional tax is expected to boost the State exchequer by an additional ₹1,800 crore per year.

However, the Thackeray government will use these funds from the additional VAT for protecting the environment and for ghting climate change. A special dedicated fund would be created for this venture.

Pawar said that in the coming days, the government is planning to undertake various projects to address the environmental issues. This includes projects related to afforestation, urban forestry, promotion of non-conventional energy, conservation and maintenance of water resources.

Concession in stamp duty

Pawar also said that it is necessary to promote the State’s real estate sector in the wake of the slowdown.

Hence, 1 per cent concession, for the next two years, in the Stamp Duty and other related charges is applicable on registration of documents in the area of Mumbai Metropolitan Region Development Authority and the areas of municipal corporations of Pune, PimpriChinchwad and Nagpur.

Solar pumps for farmers

Farmers face many problems as electricity is supplied at night. To provide electricity during day time, a total of 5 lakh solar agricultural pumps will be installed in the next 5 years.

This scheme is expected to cost around ₹10,000 crore.

The government desires to make provision for it through the budget and by other sources in the next five years.

For this purpose, an outlay of ₹670 crore has been proposed for the year 2020-21.

He added that a new Act will be brought about for providing reservation in employment of local youth.

The State government is making all-out efforts to encourage the development of new industries in the State.

However, at the same time, it is also the policy of the State government to give priority to the local candidates for the jobs in the industry.

The government intends to make a comprehensive law in this regard by correcting the flaws in the existing policy.

Published on March 06, 2020

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