Himachal government aims to reduce dependency on borrowing: Sukhu

Chief Minister Thakur Sukhvinder Singh Sukhu said here today that despite inheriting a substantial debt of Rs. 75,000 Crore from the previous BJP government and facing financial restrictions on restoring the old pension scheme from the Union Government, the state government is actively focused on resource mobilization. He said that the state government has initiated several measures to generate additional revenue for the state exchequer. These include seeking a larger share in power projects of Central PSUs that have recouped their costs. The government has also conducted auctions for liquor vends, resulting in an additional 40 percent of revenue for the state coffers.

Chief Minister Thakur Sukhvinder Singh Sukhu emphasized that the state government is striving to maintain the pace of development despite the precarious financial condition. The state government is committed to enhancing the state’s own resources and ensuring that the lack of funds does not hinder the state’s progress.

He said that the Union Government has imposed a ceiling on new proposals for external assistance through external aided agencies from Himachal Pradesh. This restriction will be in place for three years, from 2023-24 to 2025-26, and by the end of the financial year 2025-26, Himachal Pradesh will only be eligible for approval of proposals up to Rs. 2,944 crore from the Government of India. 

The Chief Minister said that State Government’s decision to reinstate the old pension scheme for government employees has led to a deduction of Rs. 1,779 crores from the borrowing ceiling for the financial year 2022-23. Additionally, the limit of open market borrowing has been reduced by around Rs. 5,500 Crore as compared to the previous year. The state government has obtained authorization for borrowing Rs. 4,259 crores until December 2023, and it is expected to receive authorization for around Rs. 8,500 crores.

Despite these challenges, Chief Minister Thakur Sukhvinder Singh Sukhu stated that the state government is placing special emphasis on resource mobilization. The state government aims to reduce dependency on borrowing and make the state self-reliant. The government has introduced various measures to revitalize the state’s economy, and with the cooperation of all sections of society, Himachal Pradesh aims to become the most prosperous state in the country within the next ten years.

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