Himachal government sets aside Rs 9,405 crore for annual development budget

Himachal Pradesh received financial assistance of Rs 7,161 crore from Centre during pandemic, agriculture played important role in strengthening economy

The Himachal Pradesh government has allocated Rs 9,405 crore for the state’s annual plan, which has now been renamed the ‘annual development budget’, said Chief Minister Jai Ram Thakur Wednesday after presiding over a State Planning Board meeting. The meeting was held to approve the draft annual development budget for 2021-22.

Thakur said that around 65 per cent of the total amount has been allocated under the general development programme, 25 per cent under the scheduled caste development programme, nine per cent for the scheduled tribe development programme, and one per cent for backward area development programme.

He said that the state government received financial assistance of Rs 7,161 crore from the Centre during the Covid-19 pandemic in the form of Pradhan Mantri Garib Kalyan Yojana, Atmanirbhar Bharat package and other schemes.

“Agriculture played an important role in strengthening the economy of the state during the pandemic. Focus must be made now on strengthening the existing infrastructure,” said the CM.

During the meeting, Power Minister Sukh Ram Chaudhary asked officials to provide time-bound approval to industrialists for setting up their units in the state. He also asked them to check illegal mining, but at the same time promote mining in a scientific way. Others who attended the meeting, including bureacrats, heads of departments and vice-chancellors of universities, suggested allocating more funds for research and development in universities, creating incentives for investors to settle in the state, promoting tourism at a global level, constructing better warehouses for product aggregation, checking tax leakages, and preventing financial exodus by motivating affluent residents not to move out of the state.

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