UP govt presents budget of Rs 5,50,270 crore to make state 'Aatmanirbhar'

By Express News Service
LUCKNOW: The Uttar Pradesh government on Monday presented the last budget of its current tenure with an outlay of Rs 5,50,270.78 crore. It was the largest budget so far in the history of the state. 

Presented by Finance Minister Suresh Kumar Khanna, UP Budget-2021-22 intended to make the state ‘Atmanirbhar’ (self-reliant) as the minister claimed. The budget included new schemes worth Rs 27,598.40 crore, Khanna said while presenting the state’s first paperless budget.

Interacting with the media persons later, CM Yogi Adityanath termed it as an all-inclusive budget representing sentiments of 24 crore people of the state. “The budget is a true representation of the idea of ‘Sabka Saath, Sabka Vikas and Sabka Vishwas’ and would bring about new hope, new energy and new possibilities of development in the state especially in the aftermath of Covid-19,” the CM said.

Yogi claimed that the budget reaffirmed his government’s resolve to provide tap water and electricity to every house, water to every farm and work to every hand. “Not only this, efforts such as connecting rural areas with banking facilities through village secretariat, common service centre, BC Sakhi in every village, employing women in community toilets will give new dimension to women empowerment and self-reliance and making villages a digital village,” said the CM.

Referring to the Kisan Accident Insurance Scheme, the CM lauded the inclusion of farmers’ families and ‘Bataidar’ in the scheme. He also mentioned the social security for almost one crore labourers in the unorganised sector, Mukhyamantri Saksham Suposhan Yojana for anaemic children, the establishment of Sainik Schools and State Universities in each division, constructing Medical Colleges under PPP Model, setting up of Law University in Prayagraj, the extension of Jal Jeevan Mission to all districts, development of road connectivity in rural areas, new policies in the aviation sector including International Airport in Ayodhya and Kushinagar, development of destitute “Gauvansh” in collaboration with NGOs at panchayat level and proposals for the establishment of a tribal museum in Lucknow, were the most thoughtful schemes which promised to take the state forward on the path of all-round development.

The CM also talked about the newly launchedChief Minister Abhyudaya Yojana’ for the youth aspiring to appear in competitive examinations such as the Civil Services exams, NEET, JEE. The CM termed the proposal to provide tablets to youths under the scheme as ‘very useful’ and said that a large number of youth would draw its benefit.

While presenting the budget, finance minister Suresh Khanna claimed that it had addressed every section of the society amidst the challenges of adverse impact on the economy due to the Covid pandemic. In the budget, along with farmers, women and youth, religious places such as Ayodhya, Varanasi and Chitrakoot had also been taken care of, said the minister.

While the state budget has the provision of Rs 300 crore for the construction of Shri Ram Temple and the access road to Ayodhya Dham, Rs 200 crore has been allocated for the development and beautification for Ayodhya and Varanasi. 

Moreover, a provision of Rs 200 crore has been proposed for the Chief Minister’s Tourism Development Scheme. A provision of Rs 20 crore has been proposed for various schemes of tourism development in Chitrakoot. Apart from this, there is a provision of Rs 30 crore for site development in Vindhyachal and Naimisharanya.

Khanna also announced the constitution of “Uttar Pradesh Gaurav Samman” to be conferred on eminent writers and artists who have not been awarded any other award in the State. Under this scheme, a maximum of five persons will be honoured every year and each awardee would be given prize money of Rs 11 lakh.

However, the state budget 2021-22 failed to impress the opposition including SP, BSP and the Congress. SP chief Akhilesh Yadav dubbed it as a deception for all the sections of society except the capitalists. He said that the farmers were deceived yet again by the government as the budget did not have anything to double their income as promised. He claimed that all the sections of society were suffering under the present BJP dispensation.

BSP chief Mayawati said the state budget was extremely disappointing like that of the central government’s, especially in terms of ending the cruelty of unemployment and creating jobs. The BSP president said it just made promises to the people but nothing to address their issues.

UP Congress chief Ajai Kumar Lallu said that the state budget had nothing for the youth. He claimed that the Yogi government wanted to keep the youth jobless in UP. “No industry was set up, The state is being run only through branding and PR,” said the Congress leader.