The Budget Session of Uttar Pradesh legislature will begin on Thursday with the Yogi Adityanath government slated to table the UP Annual Budget 2020-21 on February 18.
In the backdrop of the ruling Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) facing poll reverses in the recently held Delhi assembly polls, the budget session will be a stormy affair with the opposition likely to corner the Adityanath government on various issues, including law and order.
Although, the UP Annual Budget 2019-20 tabled on February 7, 2019 was to the tune of Rs 4.79 trillion, the total size of the state budget for the current financial year burgeoned to about Rs 4.96 trillion after the tabling of two supplementary budgets in the legislature on July 23 and December 17, 2019 of Rs 13,595 crore and Rs 4,210 crore respectively.
As such, the size of the UP Annual Budget 2020-21 is expected to breach the historic mark of Rs 5 trillion, when it is tabled next week.
The government is working on various ongoing and proposed expressway projects viz. Purvanchal Expressway, Bundelkhand Expressway and Ganga Expressway, apart from other infrastructure projects, such as Jewar International Airport, Greater Noida and UP Defence Corridor. Therefore, the Budget is likely to allocate funds towards these flagship projects, since they are aimed at attaining full or part operational status before the next UP elections in 2022.
Meanwhile, the Adityanath government today held an all party meeting seeking the support of all the political parties in the smooth conduct of the two houses of the UP legislature viz. Vidhan Sabha (Lower House) and Vidhan Parishad (Upper House).
However, the opposition, including Samajwadi Party (SP), Bahujan Samaj Party (BSP) and Congress will nevertheless attack the BJP dispensation on the people’s issues of alleged farm distress, deteriorating law and order, unemployment, lack of socioeconomic development etc.
Besides, the issue of Citizenship Amendment Act (CAA), National Register of Citizens (NRC) and National Population Register (NPR) are seen as the fulcrum around which the opposition will take the government to task, and indirectly target the Narendra Modi government at the Centre.
Meanwhile, it would be the first time when UP Governor Anandiben Patel will preside over the Annual Budget Session after taking over the gubernatorial post last year from her predecessor Ram Naik.
In the second Supplementary Budget for 2019-20 tabled in December 2019, the Adityanath government had allocated Rs 1,700 crore to the industries department for the various infrastructure projects. Rs 960 crore was given to the UP Expressway Industrial Development Authority (UPEIDA) for the prepayment of loan HUDCO loan sourced for Purvanchal Expressway.
Besides, Rs 500 crore and Rs 200 crore was allocated for Purvanchal Expressway and Bundelkhand Expressway respectively. Rs 1,000 crore was provided to the energy department for different projects and settlement of liabilities.