Harish dismisses Mallu's concern on State's debt
- Informs that State has `34,296 crore debt in the last years
- Adds Covid has pushed FRBM increase from 3 to 5 per cent
Hyderabad: Besides taking loans for developmental projects and schemes, the State government has also cleared some part of that amount thus decreasing the total debt figure, said Finance Minister T Harish Rao, while addressing the Assembly on Monday. In the last five years, Rs 34,296 crore was cleared and now the debt burden on the State is 1,54,557 lakh crore, he informed.
Harish said the debt figure of Rs 2.38 lakh crore as pointed out by Congress Legislature Party leader Mallu Bhatti Vikramarka was not correct, and added that before talking about the government's debts, one should also take into consideration the State's revenue growth.
"State's GDP growth that was Rs 4.52 lakh crore before 2014 has shot up to Rs 11.5 lakh crore, which means the growth rate increased by 2.5 per cent. The opposition is just highlighting about debts ignoring the State's revenue growth in this period," Harish stressed.
The Minister also made a mention of Reserve Bank of India's report according to which Telangana stands at 28th place in the list of States with the highest debt burden in the country. States like Punjab and Rajasthan have gone for bigger amounts for loans and hence their debt burden was higher.
Harish made a mention of Japan, Italy, America, UK that have gone for loans almost 85 to 200 per cent more than their GSDP or per capita incomes. He mentioned that the Fiscal Responsibility and Budget Management (FRBM) limit increased from 3 to 5 per cent was just for this year only.
"Indian economy shrank by nearly 23.9 per cent in the first quarter because of covid and to overcome this crisis situation, States have to focus more on capital expenditure," he opined.
Meanwhile, speaking earlier, the CLP leader said that increasing FRBM limit from 3 to 5 per cent means the TRS government will borrow a loan to the tune of Rs 55,000 crore thus increasing debt burden on the State. Already, the State's debts are at 2.38 lakh crore, he said.
If corporation guarantees are taken into consideration and if this modified FRBM limit is continued for another three years, Bhatti said, the State's total debt figure might touch 5.8 lakh crore by 2023.