Bhubaneswar: Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik on Friday expressed concern for the decreased allocation for Mahatma Gandhi National rural Employment Guarantee Act (MGNREGA), core schemes for SC and ST and other vulnerable groups, National Highways (NH) and pension under National Social Assistance Programme (NSAP) in the Union Budget 2019-20.
Patnaik also disapproved the imposition of Cess and Surcharges by the Central Government which remain outside the divisible pool further reduces the resources available to the States.
“While I welcome higher allocation for sectors like Health, Education, Skill Development, Drinking Water, Livelihood Mission, Women and Child Development, but expressed concern for the decreased allocation for MGNREGA, core schemes for SC, ST and other vulnerable groups and pension under NSAP,” said Patnaik in his reaction on the Budget.
“Increased allocation for Railways projects is a welcome step. I hope the railway projects in Odisha would be fast-tracked with adequate allocation. However, reduced allocation for National Highways would adversely affect the inter-State connectivity,” said Patnaik.
Patnaik said, “The Union Budget also lays emphasis on rural connectivity through PMGSY, housing through PMAY and Swachh Bharat Mission. However, these need to be backed by allocation of funds.”
Maintaining that landless labourers and sharecropper should also have been included in PM-KISAN, Patnaik said, “I wish the Union Government would have enhanced the quantum of assistance to farmers under “PM-KISAN’ at par with our “KALIA” scheme.”