On Monday, the Deputy CM Manish Sisodia, presented a ‘zero tax budget’ that is targeted to rationalize the Value Added Tax (VAT) system. This implies cheaper food items such as sweets, namkeen; even the manufactured items such as watches, readymade garments, shoes and school bags will be priced lower.
Sisodia stated that, “The government is committed to reducing tax arbitrage and it will attempt to keep a uniform rate with neighbouring states. For several items such as sweets, namkeen, watches and readymade garments, the lower tax rate in neighbouring states was causing erosion in our tax revenue. We have made efforts to remove such imbalances in our VAT structure.”
Along with this, the government continues to focus on education, health and transport sectors with more than half of the budget spending on these areas. Data show that education will receive Rs 4,645 crore, transport Rs 3,943 crore and public health Rs 3,200 crore in financial year 2016-2017.
Together these three sectors constitute 57.22% of Rs 20,600-crore plan expenditure of the government. Much of this money will be spent on adding classrooms, schools, Mohalla clinics, free medicines, buses, depots, among other things.
21 new schools and 8,000 new classrooms are currently under construction. The government has allocated Rs 102 crore for advanced teachers’ training in foreign universities and Rs 152 crore to impart vocational training to students from class IX to class XII in this year’s budget.
He further mentioned that, “We don’t want to develop Delhi as a smart city only for a part of Delhi, or for a special group of people. We will tirelessly work to chisel this vision by enhancing people’s well-being across class, caste, religion and generations by improving their choices in health, education, income, expenditure, ensuring their freedom and providing opportunities for meaningful participation in society.”
Since the capital is already part of the Smart city program, these initiatives will definitely embark the overall development for the residents.