Gandhinagar: The Gujarat government on Wednesday told the Assembly that its debt of over Rs 2.40 lakh crore is well within the prescribed limits and the double digit economic growth of the state is much higher than the national average.
Responding to the Congress MLAs accusing the state government of failing on various fronts, such as failure in bringing down the debt, Energy Minister Saurabh Patel said the Gross State Domestic Product (GSDP) has now touched the mark of Rs 15 lakh crore this year as against Rs 6.15 lakh crore in 2011-12.
The Gujarat government has on July 2 presented the state Budget for 2019-20 with an overall size of Rs 2,04,815 crore. Patel was responding to Congress legislators during the general discussion on the Budget.
"As per the Fiscal Responsibility and Budget Management Act, the state debt should be 27.1 per cent of the GSDP and fiscal deficit should be three per cent of the GSDP. The Congress needs to understand this rule. Gujarat's debt as well as fiscal deficit is well within this prescribed limits. Our growth is in double digits since many years and it is more than the national growth average," Patel told the House.
"Despite a ban on liquor in Gujarat, our revenue receipts are increasing every year. It shows our efficient financial management. Against the revenue expenditure of Rs
40,446 crore last year, our revenue receipt was Rs 48,956 crore. Since the past several years, we are giving a revenue surplus budget," he added.
Hailing the state Budget, Patel said of the total allocation of Rs 2.04 lakh crore, the government has earmarked a staggering Rs 1,27,560 crore as development expenditure and Rs 74,000 crore for non-development expenditure.
On the employment front, Patel said only government jobs cannot be the sole parameter on which the government's performance should be assessed. "We provide subsidies and assistance to over 25 lakh women, who were part of self help groups (SHGs). This is how we are generating employment opportunities for women. Congress accuses that banks are not giving loans to youths. I want to tell them that over 55 lakh persons from the state had taken loans worth over Rs 38,000 crore under Centre's Mudra scheme," Patel said.