Madhya Pradesh Unveils Rs 3.65 Lakh Crore Plan with Focus on Public Welfare and No New Taxes

MP budget 24-25

Bhopal: Amid the intense political climate and opposition uproar in Madhya Pradesh, the state government today presented a comprehensive budget of Rs 3.65 lakh crore for the financial year 2024-25. This budget, revealed on July 3 (Wednesday), is designed with the interests of the middle class and the general public, notably without imposing any new taxes.

In the Assembly, State Finance Minister Jagdish Devda showcased the budget as “all-encompassing,” emphasizing substantial allocations for infrastructure development and programs targeting women and tribal communities. The presentation, however, was marked by heated demands from opposition Congress members for the resignation of former Medical Education Minister Vishwas Sarang over an alleged nursing college scam.

Uproar in the Assembly: Opposition Demands Resignation

The Assembly’s atmosphere was tense as Congress members insisted on Vishwas Sarang’s resignation. Amid this uproar, Finance Minister Devda outlined the budget’s ambitious goal: doubling the state economy’s size within five years. Key initiatives include increased capital investment in critical sectors such as roads, irrigation, electricity, and healthcare and efforts to attract investments for job creation and promote better governance.

A Significant Increase in Budget Allocation

The proposed budget of Rs 3.65 lakh crore marks a 16% increase from the previous financial year. Notably, the Department of Women and Child Development has seen its allocation soar by 81% to Rs 26,560 crore. Capital expenditure is expected to rise by 15%, reaching 4.25% of the Gross State Domestic Product (GSDP).

Finance Minister’s Statement on Fiscal Priorities

Finance Minister Devda announced that the fiscal deficit for the current financial year is estimated at 4.11% of GSDP. Infrastructure funding has been boosted from Rs 49,009 crore to Rs 53,460 crore, with urban and rural development allocations increasing to Rs 44,588 crore. Significant funds have also been earmarked for Scheduled Tribe and Scheduled Caste Sub-Plans, amounting to Rs 40,804 crore and Rs 27,900 crore, respectively.

Prioritizing Welfare Schemes

A notable Rs 18,984 crore has been allocated for the popular ‘Ladli Behna Yojana,’ while Rs 15,509 crore is designated for establishing government primary schools and Rs 9,258 crore for middle schools. The agriculture sector sees an increase from Rs 22,732 crore to Rs 26,126 crore.

Ambitious Growth Plans

Devda highlighted plans to double the budget size in the coming years, citing improvements in per capita income and poverty reduction efforts. “The per capita income in the state has increased from Rs 13,465 in 2003-2004 to Rs 1.42 lakh in 2022-23,” he stated. Data from NITI Aayog indicates that 2.30 crore people have emerged from poverty in the last decade, significantly reducing poverty levels.

MP budget 24-25

Cultural and Religious Initiatives

The budget also allocates Rs 500 crore for constructing Sant Ravidas Memorials in 30 districts and infrastructure for the 2028 Simhastha conference in Ujjain. Cultural and religious tourism receives emphasis through initiatives like ‘Shri Krishna Pathey Yojana’ and ‘Ram Path Gaman Yojana,’ aimed at developing routes associated with Lord Krishna. Additionally, Rs 341 crore is allocated for establishing the ‘Vedanta Peetha.’

The Madhya Pradesh government’s budget for 2024-25 underscores a commitment to holistic development, with strategic investments aimed at fostering economic growth, enhancing public welfare, and preserving cultural heritage.