The Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) government tabled the Delhi budget for 2017-18 on Wednesday. The government claimed that Delhi’s growth rate had slowed down due to demonetisation, however, its ‘outcome budget’ will help to extract benefits out of the different expenditures
According to the economic survey, Delhi’s economic growth is estimated to slow down to 8.26% during 2016-17 from 8.82% the previous year. Despite the fact that the Delhi government failed to achieve the budgetary goal of Rs 24,000 crore for the current financial year, finance minister Manish Sisodia was expected to increase tax collection target in his budget proposal for 2016-17. However, no new taxes were levied and segments like Municipal bodies, Delhi Women Commission have been given enhanced allocation. Education and health continued to be the focus areas for the government with clean energy and water supply also receiving attention.
Here are the highlights of the budget day:
3pm: Delhi finance minister says demonetisation resulted in reduced GDP and lower target of tax collection.
2.56pm: Manish Sisodia addresses press meet after tabling the budget in the Assembly; Says Delhi first to present and ‘outcome budget’ where accountability will be fixed within departments.
The first ever "Outcome" budget. A new experiment to make budgeting transparent n directly accountable to people— Arvind Kejriwal (@ArvindKejriwal) March 8, 2017
2.45pm: Vijender Gupta says government not answering questions about the schemes announced earlier; claims government has failed to come up with a blue print to implement schemes. Gupts says the budget presented by the AAP government is a jugglery of words and figures and lacks commitment and enthusiasm.
2.31pm: Vijender Gupta claims existing minimum wages not implemented by the government, Gupta says government shifting budgetary goalposts each year and calls it a ‘zero outcome budget’; says government recycling old plans instead of coming up with new ideas.
2.29pm: Vijender Gupta alleges corruption Mohalla Clinics, says the government must first improve upon the existing clinics.
2.26pm: Leader of opposition in Delhi Assembly, Vijender Gupta says AAP government’s budget lacks vision adds that the government does not have a development road map.
1.44pm: Budget speech concludes and reactions pour in. Chief minister Arvind Kejriwal hails cut in tax on air turbine fuel and sanitary napkins. Watch here:
Reacting to the budget chief minister Arvind Kejriwal says ‘clean’ AAP government is saving public money.
1.45pm: Tax on air turbine fuel to be reduced to 1% from 25%. Sisodia says tax reduction on ATF is aimed to improve connectivity with northeast areas.
1.39pm: Tax on sanitary napkins costing above Rs 20 to be reduced from 12.5% to 5%.
1.37pm: No new tax proposals this year. This is unlike 2016, when the Aam Aadmi Party government revised value added tax making goods like ready-made garments, sweet and salted snacks, watches, battery-operated rickshaws and marbles cheaper in the open market. HT had reported on March 1 that the budget this year was unlikely to have new tax proposals.
1.35pm: Sisodia announces plan for single window system for film shooting in Delhi, says riverfront along Yamuna to be developed; allocates Rs 119 crore for tourism and culture.
1.32pm: Both and rural and urban villages to be included in Delhi village board. Rs 20 crore allocated for development of Chatth ghats in Delhi.
1.29pm: Government to focus on solar energy and waste to energy plant. Sisodia announces Rs 2,194 crore for this, also says, “We are continuously monitoring pollution, number of centres to be increased from 6 to 26.”
1.27pm: Rs 3,113 crore allocated for housing and slums, an increase of 21% over last year. Last year, DSIIDC was asked to build roads and drains in unauthorised colonies of Delhi and Rs 300 crore were allocated for this project.
1.23pm: More than 12 lakh zero water bills last year. Based on 20,000 litres of water free scheme. Rain water harvesting to be encouraged, says Sisodia.
1.19pm: Rs 2,107.9 crore allocated for water sector. Rs 2,108 crore allocated for water supply and Yamuna cleaning. Last year, the government allocated Rs 676 crore for providing piped water in 300 new colonies.
1.17pm: 27% increase for funds under social welfare. Sisodia says budget for Delhi Commission for Women increased by three times to Rs 120 crore.
1.12pm: Consultants appointed for elevated corridors proposed last year. These corridors include Barapullah Nallah phase-II from Jawahar Lal Nehru Stadium to INA (Aurobindo Marg), Barapullah Nallah phase-III from Sarai Kale Khan to Mayur Vihar, two elevated BRT corridors — one along Anand Vihar Terminal to Peeragarhi (East – West Corridor – 29 Kms) and the other from Wazirabad to Airport (North South Corridor – 24 Kms).
1.10pm: Rs 100 crore allocated for development of bus terminal and depot. Rs 5,506 crore for public transport.
1.07pm: Rs 5,736 crore allocated for health sector in 2017-18. Last year, the government had earmarked Rs 5,259 crore for the health sector, a hike of 10% over the previous year. It announced 1,000 mohalla clinics, and 10,000 additional hospital beds to be provided over two years.
1.02pm: Early childhood learning centres will also be opened. In a child’s first 2-6 years, if we concentrate on their learning abilities and develop those, it will benefit. Ten early childhood centres to be opened on a pilot basis, says Sisodia.
12.59pm: Rs 182 crore for extra computers in Delhi Government schools. Teachers to get Tablets to track student progress.
12.55pm: Rs 100 crore allocated for 400 new libraries in Delhi Government schools. Banana and boiled egg to be served in midday meals.
12.50pm: 10,000 new classrooms proposed in next financial year. Nursery classes will start in 156 schools. Last year about 8,000 new classrooms were announced.
12.48pm: MCDs get Rs 7,571 crore, about 15% of the total budget outlay. AAP will make its debut in civic body elections due next month.
12.47pm: Total budget outlay for 2017-18 pegged at Rs 48,000 crore. Last year this was Rs 46,600 crore.
12.45pm: Budget presentation begins. “There might be mistakes as this is first time any state is implementing outcome budget,” Sisodia says.
12.44pm: Sisodia says outcome budget will look at how many get the benefits of the different expenditures.
12.42pm: “Traditionally the focus of the budget on allocations, not about how many people will benefit from the expenditures. Earlier we discussed the planned budget, with little to no discussion on the non planned expenditures, which make up more than half of the budget. So outcome budget,” says the Delhi finance minister.
12.40pm: “The outcome budget for the first time in the country. The outcome budget will be like a contractual agreement between the government and its departments.” says Sisodia.
12.38pm: Sisodia is discusses the economic and financial health of Delhi over the last year and presents projections for 17-18. Though the growth rate of GSDP had slowed down a little last year. It is expected to catch up this year.
12.35pm: “Despite note ban, Delhi’s (Gross State Domestic Product) GSDP likely to increase,” says Sisodia.
12.32pm: Sisodia attacks demonetisation in the Assembly. “Decision of note ban seems to be taken by spinning the coin. Demonetisation affected the city badly,” he says.
12.29pm: Sisodia highlights Chunauti Mission as an achievement of the government, where over 1 lakh non reader students were taught to read. Says quality education for poor and rich has been the government’s goal.
12.26pm: “I am happy that we can see the outcomes of the expenditures from the previous budgets. This government has been applauded on national and international forums for its work in Delhi”, says Sisodia.
12.22pm: “Now EWS admission won’t happen on reference basis. We have ended that system,” says Sisodia. “We have started 9 new vocational colleges,” he adds.
12.20pm: “We have created the budget outside the tradition of using “planned” and “non planned” expenditure, as common man may not be able to understand this,” says Sisodia. “This is the first outcome budget of Delhi,” he says. Adds that there will be quarterly monitoring of outcome to ensure performance.
12.15pm: Deputy chief minister Manish Sisodia begins his speech, says “We have increased minimum wages by 37%.”
12.10pm: Last year, the Arvind Kejriwal-led government allocated Rs 10,690 crore — 22.9% of the total budget outlay for 2016-17 — to the education sector. The focus was on teacher training programmes and physical infrastructure.
12.05pm: Delhi cabinet members led by Arvind Kejriwal leave for Delhi Assembly.
12.02pm: Budget session about to begin, chief minister Arvind Kejriwal’s arrival awaited.
12pm: Plan budget for 2016-17 was Rs 20,600 crore. These funds were to be used for new projects and infrastructure development.
11.55am: Delhi’s total budget allocation for 2016-17 was Rs 46,600 crore.
11.44am: Deputy CM and finance minister Manish Sisodia reaches Vidhan Sabha. He will present the budget at 12pm.
11.40am: Protests outside chief minister Arvind Kejriwal’s house ahead of Delhi Budget 2017.
11.34am: Ministers Kapil Mishra and Imran Hussain arrive at Delhi Assembly.
11.27am: Budget speech to be read by finance minister Manish Sisodia.
11.23am: Delhi government to present the budget at 12 noon in a departure from the practice of presenting it in the second half post tea break.