Shimla, Mar 2
Himachal Pradesh’s revenue receipts for the financial year 2020-21 are expected to fall short of around Rs 3,000 crore as compared to the initial budget estimates.
The shortfall of revenue is attributed primarily due to the Covid pandemic, chief minister Jai Ram Thakur informed the state legislative assembly during the ongoing budget session on Tuesday.
Under the Himachal Pradesh Fiscal Responsibility and Budget Management
Rules, Thakur tabled a review of receipts and expenditure for 2020-21, which said that the latest estimates for state’s revenue receipts during the year are Rs 3,000.94 crore less than the budget estimates.
It said that the state’s own tax revenue is expected to decrease by Rs 1,173 crore and the non-tax revenue by Rs 149.4 crore, both due to the adverse effects of the Covid-induced lockdown.
The central transfers are expected to decrease by Rs 1,871 crore due to short fall in share in central taxes devolution and GST compensation while grants under centrally sponsored schemes are expected to increase by around Rs 193 crore due to increase in receipts for PMGSY, Central Road Fund etc.
The revenue expenditure, too, is expected to be less than the budget estimates due to non-release of revised pay scales and pension, the review said, adding that the fiscal deficit is now expected to be 4.21
percent of the estimated gross state domestic product (GSDP).
Thakur said that despite the pandemic, the state government is committed to keep the fiscal deficit under five percent of the estimated GSDP.
He said that the government is trying to reduce “unproductive expenses” and has already “compressed wasteful revenue expenditure in the present financial year”.
He said that the fiscal policy strategy of the state involves ensuring buoyancy in state’s own tax and non tax receipts, tapping available resources with the central government for financing various schemes and programmes, recourse to financial resources through externally aided projects and availing increased borrowings allowed by the central government during the