Guwahati, March 12: Today Assam Budget 2018 was presented which focuses on infrastructure, education and skill development. The Assam Budget was presented by Finance Minister Himanta Biswas Sarma, was streamed online and details were updated on social media- making Assam’s 1st e-budget.
“After Andhra Pradesh, Assam has become the second state to have an e-budget, but unlike the other state, Assam budget is available in Google Play Store so that anybody can access it,” Minister Sarma said.
Chief Minister Sarbananda Sonowal said that AssamBudget2018 is a budget for all -- particularly youth, senior citizens, women, farmers and tea workers. It takes forward our agenda of building an Assam free from corruption, foreigners, terrorism & pollution.
Education: Rs 980 Crores has been allocated for improving the infrastructure of schools that still lack basic facilities such as separate classrooms and electricity. It has been decided to increase salary allowances of the workers by Rs 1000 and helpers by Rs 500. Reservation of two seats in our medical colleges for students from other North-Eastern states that do not have a State medical college.
Employment: Daily Wage of Home Guards to increase from Rs 250 per day to Rs 300 per day. The enhanced wages will start from FY 2018-19. Salary allowances of Anganwadi workers and ASHA workers to be increase by Rs 1000 and of Anganwadi Helpers by Rs 500.Financial assistance in form of a onetime grant of Rs 5 Lakh to families of the staff members who die in harness. Government will set up Media Fellowship for pursuing higher studies in journalism so that 20 journalists can be selected for fellowship at rate of Rs 50,000 each. Pension Scheme for Journalists announced allowing one-time grant of Rs 10 lakhs. Rs 5 Crores for providing Self Employment grants to Educated Youths under Atal Atma Sansthapon Yojana.
Health: Government would launch an inclusive cancer control programme in partnership with Tata Trusts. The government will also strengthen the infrastructure of 6 government medical colleges and 11 district hospitals by next year to help them provide “varying degrees of cancer care”. The Tata group will contribute Rs 830 Crores to this project for over 2 financial years, while the government will contribute Rs 1080 Crores. Around 92% of Assam’s population will be covered under government’s health scheme – Atal Amrit Abhiyam programme catering to both BPL (below poverty line) and APL (above poverty line) population. Rs 16 Crores allocated under Sanjeevani- Village Health Outreach Program in 7680 villages of Assam. To provide an assistance of Re 5000 for medical treatment for our differently abled people under Deen Dayal Divyang Xahajya Achoni.
Infrastructure: Programme was announced for improving state highways and the major roads in districts, and a scheme to assist young entrepreneurs. The government announced a skill-training programme for youngsters and promised to invest Rs 14,800 per person. Token provision of Rs 20 Crores to construct paver block roads along labour lines in all Tea Gardens in Assam. Those with the population above 40000 (Census 2011) and accordingly, government proposes to bring 8 new towns under the scheme.
Digitization: Every tea garden employee who opened a bank account after the government had announced the demonetisation policy will receive Rs 5,000. To promote digital literacy, the government will provide each “line sardar” – the leaders of the labourers in tea gardens – with smartphones that cost about Rs 3,000.
Women: Girls and women between 12 to 20 years old, whose family income is below Rs 5 lakh, can avail of an annual stipend of Rs 600 to buy sanitary napkins. The government also announced a scheme for unmarried daughters of pensioners, saying they will be eligible to avail of the money in case the pensioner in their family dies. New scholarship scheme for girl children belonging to the Minority Communities. Kanaklata Mahila Sabalikaran Yojana: A scheme to promote at least one lakh self-sustainable, self-help groups (SHGs) in the State through loan and capital subsidy will be launched in the upcoming financial year.
Sports: Each panchayat will be given Re 25,000 to organize Gaon Panchayat level Football tournament. Rs 5 Crores each for installing flood lights in stadium in Dibrugarh, Jorhat, Karimganj, Diphu, Mangaldai, Tezpur & Tinsukia thereby strengthening rural sports infrastructure.