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Last Updated Thursday March 22 2018 05:14 PM IST

Kerala budget to be presented in February first week

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Thomas Isaac Thomas Isaac will be the first after Vakkom Purushothaman to present a full budget so early in the financial year: File photo

Thiruvananthapuram: Kerala finance minister Thomas Isaac is expected to roll out a Rs 25,000 cr stimulus to offset the impact of GST and demonetization on the economy, in an earlier-than-usual-budget, touted to be presented in early February.

Watch out this space for an exclusive, in depth interview with finance minister Thomas Issac on the first anniversary of demonetization.

Coming after the drastic change in the tax regime which greatly reduced states’ power to tax, the state budget will no longer be keenly watched for the addition or omission of taxes.

After the formation of the subject committee in 1980, this is the second time since Vakkom Puroshothaman's 2004 budget presented during the tenure of the UDF government, that a full budget will be passed before March 31.

The finance subject committee of the legislature whets key legislation under the purview of the finance ministry.

The early process will allow various government departments to utilize their share from the beginning of the financial year.

The Kerala legislative assembly is expected to be convened in late January for the budget to be presented in early February.

“The budget will be presented as soon as the (CPM) district conventions are over. You can finish the process in a week,” Isaac told Onmanorama.

There will be a recess of three weeks after the governor’s speech and discussions on it. Subject committees could vet the budget during that period. The house will meet in March to present the budget.”

The Left Democratic Front government intends to put an end to the practice of presenting the budget as late as March with a vote-on-account to release funds for April-June.

The full budget is not usually presented till June, leaving the departments very little time to utilize the funds in the intended financial year.

Previously, the departments had to wait until December to tap into their share of funds for development projects.

The vote-on-account method allotted funds for various projects on a temporary basis without the approval of the subject committee.

Read more at: Latest in Kerala | Anti-GAIL stir at Mukkam: Kerala govt calls all-party meet on Monday

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