Delhi Voters Get Rs 253 Crore For Self Rule

Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal (left) and Deputy Chief Minister Manish Sisodia at a budget consultation meeting with industry and trade bodies on June 3, 2015. Image: Govt. of Delhi   Decide your neighbourhood priorities, instead of leaving it to the government.   With that thought in mind, Delhi’s Deputy Chief Minister Manish Sisodia announced … Continued

Agricultural Income Rises, Andhra Plans Industrial Future

Chief minister of Andhra Pradesh, N. Chandra Babu Naidu (left) with Prime Minister Narendra Modi (right) in New Delhi on February 15, 2015.   Agriculture’s share in the gross domestic product (GDP) of truncated Andhra Pradesh is growing—unlike the decline India is witnessing—but the state plans an industrial future for itself.   Doubling per capita … Continued

In Election Year, Bihar Faces Financial Shock

  Bihar, India’s third-most-populous state and one of its poorest, faces financial shock in an election year–with a 42% decline in aid from Delhi and a doubling of debt.   That has not stopped Bihar – a state of 104 million people and an average annual per capita (current) income of Rs 33,954 ($565), a … Continued

How Will—Unprepared—States Handle A $29-Billion Budget Bonanza?

Chief ministers of several states at a Niti Aayog meeting in New Delhi on March 27, 2015   Last week the Niti Aayog’s sub-group of chief ministers held a crucial meeting to discuss the future of Centrally-Sponsored Schemes (CSS) in India. CSS, a key instrument through which social-sector priorities are financed, have been at the … Continued

Rajasthan Creates Surplus Budget—By Not Spending Money

Rajasthan’s chief minister Vasundhara Raje (left) with Prime Minister Narendra Modi (right) in July 2014   The Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP)-led government in Rajasthan—like its counterparts in Tamil Nadu, Delhi and Jammu & Kashmir—is preparing for a slowdown in fund flows from the central government.   While presenting the budget in the assembly recently, Rajasthan … Continued

Delhi, Seeking 381% Subsidy Rise, Complains About New Delhi

Delhi’s finance minister Manish Sisodia (left) with Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal (right) in February 2014   The devolution of financial power by New Delhi—the seat of India’s central government—continues to roil the states with the provincial government of Delhi rebelling, saying it would lose Rs 25,000 crore ($4 billion) over a decade.   In the … Continued

Leading Welfare State Gets Less Funds From Delhi, Rebels

Former Tamil Nadu CM J. Jayalalitha (left) with present CM and finance minister Panneerselvam (right) in February 2014   Tamil Nadu–which is in an election year and runs India’s most extensive welfare state–has rebelled against the devolution of financial power to the states, part of the decentralisation process put into motion by New Delhi.   … Continued

5 Things The J&K Budget Can Teach India

Finance minister for Jammu & Kashmir, Haseeb Drabu   “I am asserting that I shall not go with a begging bowl to New Delhi. This despite the fact that we not only have a friendly government at the Centre, we also have an exceptionally sensitive and accommodating Union Finance Minister. By doing so, I do … Continued

Kerala’s New Gambit: Pay Interest On Agri Loans

  The Kerala government is planning a unique experiment to tackle the agrarian crisis. Presenting the budget for the year 2015-16, Finance Minister K. M. Mani announced that the government will pay the entire interest payable by farmers on every loan where the farmer repays the principal on time.   The minister also set aside … Continued

Debt-laden Maharashtra To Spend Its Way Out of Farm Crisis

  India’s richest state by gross domestic product has a dangerous way of funding itself: by borrowing money, and borrowing money to repay borrowed money.   Maharashtra’s outstanding debt, according to the state budget released this week, is Rs 300,477 crore ($48 billion), an increase of 10.5% over last year.   This is how the … Continued