GUWAHATI, Sept 25: What can be termed as a major setback for the State’s economy, the Gross State Democratic Products of Assam is declining fast with the present regime at Dispur not being able to spend nearly half of funds allotted in Budget for priority development schemes in the last financial year.
In a written reply to questions raised by Congress MLA Abdul Khaleque, Finance Minister Himanta Biswa Sarma on Tuesday informed the Assembly that the State Government had allotted Rs 48,189.90 crore in the last financial year’s budget for carrying out developmental works by various departments, of which only Rs 25,619.83 crore was spent in the entire year. The development implies that nearly half of the total allotted funds could not be utilized.
Sarma said not getting the fund release proposals from departments concerned was one of the reasons for under utilization of allotted funds coupled with the massive floods in the State in 2017-18.
The Agriculture Department could utilize only Rs 901.62 crore out of allotted Rs 1652.47 crore, followed by Guwahati Development Department spending Rs 417.26 crore out of Rs 1701.98 crore, Industries & Commerce Department spending Rs 196.07 crore out of Rs 746.85 crore, Public Works (Buildings & NH) Department utilizing Rs 75.90 crore out of Rs 341.89 crore, Social Welfare Department spending Rs 403.64 crore out of Rs 1827.67 crore, Transport Department utilizing Rs 102.55 crore out of Rs 191.47 crore and Tourism Department using Rs 64.47 crore out of Rs 107.55 crore.
On other hand, the Gross State Democratic Products (GSDP) of Assam declined to 11.57 per cent and 11.59 per cent in 2016-17 and 2017-18 respectively from 16.47 per cent in 2015-16 at the current prices.