In a bid to give a massive push to the public infrastructure, Jammu and Kashmir governor Satya Pal Malik on Saturday approved Rs 88,911 crore state budget for the financial year 2019-20. The State Administrative Council (SAC) headed by Governor Malik approved the budget at a specially convened meeting in Jammu and Kashmir this evening, state chief secretary B V R Subrahmanyam said.
Principal secretary finance Navin K Choudhary gave a detailed presentation to the SAC on the revised estimates for 2018-19, budget estimates for 2019-20 and other key features of the budget.
The SAC was informed that the focus of the budget 2019-20 is to give a big push to tangible developmental initiatives with Rs 30,469 crore earmarked for building public and social infrastructure in addition to Rs 3,631 crore already provided under languishing projects programme.
The SAC observed that investment in infrastructure is the growth driver for economy and has a cascading impact on all sectors including employment generation and socio-economic development.
"The budget 2019-20 is structured around three fundamental objectives of building infrastructure, building institutions and building systems under the government's overarching mission for delivering development and mission on good governance," Subrahmanyam said.
"The budget is aimed at driving the state's economic growth through multifarious initiatives with thrust on substantive developmental and welfare measures. The investment in key developmental and social sectors has been enhanced substantively to leave a visible impact on the ground," he added.
Besides, Malik also reviewed the latest security scenario in Kashmir including details of the counter infiltration and counter terrorist operations undertaken recently. He directed the security forces to minimize the collateral damage during anti-terror operations.
Jammu and Kashmir state secretary Subrahmanyam further said that in order to build adequate capacities in the line departments for spending huge developmental funds, it has been decided that the line departments would be adequately strengthened by way of providing consultants, setting up of dedicated Detailed Project Report (DPR) preparation cells and project Implementation agencies and IT consultants.
Pained by the unnecessary and avoidable loss of civilian lives in operation, Governor appealed to the people to keep a distance from areas where anti-militancy operations are in progress. He appealed to them not to go near such areas during or immediately after such operations.
Governor directed security forces to give time for people to evacuate from an area during an anti-militancy operation as per the laid down SOP.
Malik also directed Divisional Commissioner, Kashmir to inquire the incident that happened in Pulwama this morning and suggested precautions to minimise civilian casualties in anti-militancy operations.
(With inputs from agencies)