The Gujarat government on Friday presented a Rs 3.01 lakh crore Budget for the 2023-24 fiscal, a 23 per cent rise in budgetary provisions as compared to last year. Announcing the Budget, Finance Minister Kanu Desai said that the state would spend Rs 5 lakh crore over the next five years for development of infrastructural facilities.
Speaking at the session, Desai described this budget as a “Five-Year Vision.” The minister also tagged Gujarat as a state that contributes 8.36% to India’s GDP. He went on to claim Gujarat was the “growth engine of the country” and has been registering an average annual vikas rate of 12.56% in the last 10 years.
The finance minister allotted Rs 18,000 crore for Ahmedabad Metro Phase-II, Rs 15,182 crore for health sector and Rs 43,651 crore allocation for education sector, among other allocations.
He also summed up Gujarat’s development vision:
- basic amenities to the poor and needy sections of the society
- human resource development
- public well-being and prosperity
- promotion of private investment
- green growth
Besides, Rs 905 crore was allocated for Metro projects in Ahmedabad and Surat. A provision of Rs 200 crore to cover equity contribution for the Ahmedabad-Mumbai bullet train project was also announced in the state budget. A total of Rs 100 crore has been sanctioned for construction of iconic bridges in various municipal corporations. In addition, Rs 20,642 crore has been set aside to develop roads and buildings while Rs 3,514 to aid with development of ports and transport.
Desai said that the state would also focus on development of ports and water bodies. To this effect, Rs 1,415 crore has been allocated for building the Bhadbhut reservoir on the Narmada river and Rs 150 crore for developing the Sabarmati riverfront near GIFT City. The Budget also earmarked Rs 640 crore for developing new fishing ports in Gujarat and the strengthening existing centres. Another Rs 76 crore has also been provided for developing infra in GIFT City.
On the education front, Desai annouced that new medical colleges will be established in Aravali, Chotta Udepur, Mahisagar and Dang districts. Apart from these, five new nursing colleges will also be set up. The Gujarat government has also earmarked a sum of Rs 75 crore to provide bicycles to 2 lakh students from the scheduled and developing castes.
A provision of Rs 27 crore has also been made to develop the Gir Sanctuary and to set up two more lion safaris.
AGRICULTURE: Stating that betterment of farmers continues to be the government’s key focus, Desai announced an outlay of Rs 2 lakh crore in next five years to boost economic activities in agriculture, industry and services sector.
Approximately Rs 2 lakh crore will be spent during the next 5 years to ensure that social security welfare schemes reach needy families in the state
Rs 4 lakh crore will be spent in the next 5 years for the bright future of children from underprivileged sections of the society
Rs 3,401 crore earmarked for Tribal Development
Rs 2,538 crore for Labor – Skill Development – Employment Department
Rs 6,064 crore set aside for Women and Child Development Department
Rs 2,165 crore to boost Food – Civil Supplies and Consumer Affairs
Rs 568 crore to uplift facilities for Sports and Cultural Activities
Rs 10,743 crore for Panchayats – Village Housing and Village Development Department
Rs 8,738 crore to revitalise the Energy and Chemicals Department
Rs 9,705 crore for Water Resources Division
Rs 6,000 crore for Water Supply Department
Rs 2,139 for Science and Technology Department
Rs 2,077 crore to boost Tourism – Pilgrimage and Civil Aviation
Rs 2,063 for Forest and Environment Department
Rs 937 crore for Climate Change Department
Rs 8,574 crore towards Home Department