Drabu Unveils 76,335 Crore Deficit Budget

Jammu:  Laying emphasis on the micro-budgetary reform, State Finance Minister Dr Haseeb Drabu on Wednesday presented Rs 79,472 crore deficit budget laying emphasis on pro-employees welfare initiatives, including the implementation of 7th Pay Commission from April next year. 

Dr Drabu in his Budget speech in the Assembly said the focus will be on timely rollout of projects under PMDP to the tune of Rs 80,000 crore for development and reconstruction of physical and economic infrastructure.

Various initiatives were also announced including insurance to government properties, crops, heritage properties and various types of financial aid for workforce in different sectors. 

“In this budget my focus is on the micro-budgetary reform: operations of Government programs and agencies. This budget is devoted to improving the operational efficiency of spending,” Drabu said in his exhaustive speech.       

He said that his effort in this budget is to initiate a comprehensive change of procedures and organization, aided by Information Technology. “In other words, I propose a Business Process Reengineering to build a new framework for the budget. It is a move from the traditional Public Administrative Budgeting to a modern Public Management Approach. This shift will have fundamental implications.”

Drabu said his two previous budgets focussed on micro finance and allocation in the industrially backward state while the present budget aimed at operations.

He proposed a reform in the government's payment system and announced that treasuries would be replaced by functionally aligned pay and accounts offices (PAO) to monitor and control the purpose and objective of payments, budgetary sanctions and ceilings, proper classification and excess payment issues.

For all receipts and disbursements of the government, the PAOs would be departmentally aligned.

"They would deal with those heads of accounts which are related to the functions of their concerned departments.

"Instead of receiving the receipts and disbursing the payments of numerous departments in the treasury system, the PAOs would deal with just one department."

He said the new system would do away with the practice of physically carrying bills, challans and invoices to the treasuries for audit and invoice checking at the department level.

"Instead, a computerised integrated financial management system (IFMS) will process all those functions online. The new system will be in vogue from October 1, 2017 and complete the transition by March 31 the next year," Drabu said.

He also said the state government has decided to waive token tax collected from public transport operators for six months beginning this July.

This was being done to mitigate the sufferings of public transport operators due to shutdowns and curfews during the months of unrest in the Kashmir Valley.

He also announced that the services of all casual labourers working in various departments of the state government would be made permanent from next year while steps would immediately be taken to regularise the services of those contractual labourers who had given their lands free of cost for developmental purposes.

The budget proposals also provide for making Adhaar card compulsory for everybody who seeks a government job in the state.

He said all government departments would get 50 per cent of their fund allocations by February 10 and this would ensure that various projects get started in right earnest without losing any time in the next fiscal.

Online Sale Facility For Artisans, Weavers 

Finance Minister, Dr Haseeb A Drabu Wednesday while delivering the budget speech in the Jammu and Kashmir Legislature, said that the Government will create an e-Commerce platform to link 20000 artisans and weavers of the State for direct online sale of their products.

“The target is to increase the exports of Handicrafts and Handloom Products from the current level by Rs 1000 Crore annually besides serving the prime objective of minimizing the exploitation of the multiple layers of middleman-ship,” Dr Drabu said.

Read More  FULL TEXT OF 2017-18 BUDGET 

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