Harish Rao pleads with Centre to rescue TS from fiscal crisis

Telangana Health Minister T Harish Rao
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Telangana Health Minister T Harish Rao

Highlights

To address pending issues with regard to the AP Reorganisation Act

Hyderabad: TheTelangana government has pleaded with the Centre to come to the rescue of the State in addressing its financial crisis and also to address the pending issues with regard to the AP Reorganisation Act.

At the pre- budget meeting conducted by Union Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman in New Delhi, State Finance Secretary Ronald Ross presented Finance Minister T Harish Rao's speech.

He said that the Centre's decision treat off budget borrowings raised by the State public sector corporations serviced out of the State budget as borrowings made by the State itself effective from

2021-22 has come as a shock to the government. The 15th Finance Commission has not made any recommendation to this effect. Adjustments of past off-budget borrowings will reduce the borrowing limits of the State and thereby its capital expenditure. The State government requested that this decision may be made applicable prospectively from 2023-24.

The Centre was requested the scheme of Special Assistance to State for Capital Expenditure should be continued for five more years with an enhanced allocation of Rs.2 lakh crore per annum.

The State may be provided the facility of premature repayment of the interest-free loans under the scheme.

The government brought to the notice of the Union ministry the pending commitments made in the AP Reorganisation Act, 2014. These relate to establishment of tribal university, integrated steel plant, rail coach factory.

The State also requested the Union government to announce major tax concessions. The State had made numerous requests for according national project status to Kaleshwaram Project, the world's largest lift irrigation project.

The State official informed the Finance ministry that with the reduction of cess and surcharges on petrol and diesel, the incidence of State VAT will automatically come down as it is levied on an ad valorem basis.

The official explained in the meeting that the sub-group of chief ministers appointed by the NITI

Aayog has recommended that States should be given the option to choose from a bouquet of CSS. "This recommendation though accepted has not been acted upon so far. Spreading resources too thinly across a number of schemes is very unproductive".

"We request that apart from reducing the number of schemes, a State should be given the option of selecting a few schemes which suit its requirements. This will be in the interest of promoting cooperative federalism."

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