Niti Aayog Coun­ters Akhilesh with Bud­get Al­lo­ca­tion Data

The Economic Times - - Economy: Macro, Micro & More - Our Bureau

New Delhi: Re­buff­ing com­ments by the Ut­tar Pradesh chief min­is­ter that the Union Bud­get was dis­ap­point­ing for the poll­bound state, Niti Aayog has put to­gether data to show how UP has ben­e­fited from bud­getary al­lo­ca­tions. Ac­cord­ing to Fi­nance Com­mis­sion’s rec­om­men­da­tions, trans­fers as a per­cent­age to non-plan bud­get have in­creased from 42% in FY2015 to 54% in FY2017, the Cen­tre’s think-tank has pointed out while blam­ing the Akhilesh Ya­dav-led state gov­ern­ment for lack of proac­tive ac­tion to avail all the funds of­fered un­der dif­fer­ent schemes.

Niti Aayog has listed the amount avail­able for UP un­der dif­fer­ent schemes and their util­i­sa­tion, show­ing poor draw­down in many cases. It also said projects worth more than ₹ 1.6 lakh crore are in the pipe­line or have been com­pleted in UP in the past twoand-a-half years after the NDA gov­ern­ment came to power.

A fact sheet com­piled by Niti Aayog shows tax de­vo­lu­tion to UP in­creas­ing from ₹ 68,639.74 crore in FY2015 to Rs 1,02,649.91 crore in FY2017 out of which ₹ 83,427.69 crore has been re­leased till Fe­bru­ary 1, 2017. Akhilesh Ya­dav, in a com­ment after the Bud­get on Fe­bru­ary 1, had said: “As chief min­is­ter of UP, I think it is deeply ironic that the state that sends the prime min­is­ter, de­fence min­is­ter, home min­is­ter and 73 MPs of the rul­ing NDA to the Lok Sabha, has once again been dis­ap­pointed by the Union Bud­get. This was, how­ever, ex­pected this year, since the Elec­tion Com­mis­sion had al­ready asked gov­ern­ment of In­dia on Jan­uary 23 to not make spe­cific an­nounce­ments for states go­ing to elec­tion to, quite rightly, pro­vide a level play­ing field at the polls.” UP goes to the polls from Fe­bru­ary 11.

On Ya­dav’s charges that the Cen­tre was un­able to name any large pro­ject it has flagged off in UP since 2014, Niti Aayog listed sev­eral rail­way and high­way projects to re­buff the crit­i­cism.

“In Ut­tar Pradesh, since May 2014, In­dian Rail­ways has opened new line of 146 km, 214 km of broad gauge and 439 km of to­tal bro-

ad gauge track. In 2015-16, in UP, six rail­way sta­tions have been com­pleted with the elec­tri­fi­ca­tion work and 2,026 km rail­way line work in progress with es­ti­mated cost of ₹ 3,743 crore. A ded­i­cated freight cor­ri­dor has been al­lot­ted with the cost of ₹ 14,877 crore,” the fact sheet showed.

Ac­cord­ing to Niti Aayog, ₹ 7,826 crore has been al­lot­ted to works in UP for road trans­port in­clud­ing ₹ 635 crore for NH-24 B (four lan­ing of Luc­know-Rae­bareli stretch), ₹ 1,267 crore for NH 24 (four lan­ing of Mo­rad­abad-Rae­bareli stretch) and ₹ 201.66 crore for NH 25 el­e­vated struc­ture.

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