The absence of any new taxes and a power subsidy of Rs 260 crore for domestic users were some of the sops announced by Union Finance Minister Arun Jaitley who presented the Rs 36,776-crore budget for Delhi — which is under President’s rule — on Friday in Parliament. The main focus areas of the budget included health, transport and education.
Providing relief to small power consumers, subsidy of 1.20 per unit for up to 200 units and 80 paisa per unit for the slab 201-400 units was announced a day after power tariff was hiked. The government has earmarked Rs 260 crore as power subsidy.
“Increase in power tariffs is necessitated due to increase in input costs. However, the poor and marginalised should not suffer. I, therefore, propose power subsidy of Rs 260 crore for domestic consumers to provide relief to targeted consumers on account of increase in tariff. The modalities will be worked out by the Government of NCT of Delhi,’’ Jaitley said.
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On the power front, New Delhi Municipal Council (NDMC) area is proposed to be developed as a solar city under the scheme of development of solar cities of Ministry of New and Renewable Energy. Under Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy Management Programme. I propose a plan outlay of Rs 675 crore for the energy sector,’’ he said.
In the Union budget, Rs 200 crore was announced as power reforms, to improve the transmission and distribution network. Delhi Transco Limited (DTL) is going to commission new sub-stations in the city, as per the Delhi Budget. The 1500 MW gas turbine station at Bawana is also expected to be made fully functional.
For improving water supply in the capital, Jaitley allocated Rs 1,249 crore. However, no subsidy has been announced. “We will work to make pucca the parallel channel from Munak to Haiderpur functional after resolving long-pending issues with the Haryana government. This will make available 80 MGD raw water for new water treatment plants in Dwarka (40 MGD), Okhla (20 MGD) and Bawana (20 MGD) for about 35 lakh living in South, Southwest, West and Northwest Delhi,” Jaitley said.
To provide drinking water at an affordable price in parched areas of the city, government proposed to set up 500 water ATMS in the capital. “About 500 ATMs supported with ground water/tanker services will be set up in 2014-15,” Jaitley said.
“To provide drinking water facilities at an affordable price in water-deficient areas, small-sized decentralised drinking water Reverse Osmosis based plants will be set up and water will be made available through water ATMs,” he said.
The minister, while presenting the Union Budget last week, had announced Rs 50 crore for construction of Renuka Dam. He had also announced Rs 500 crore for water reforms in the capital in the Union Budget.
The present water treatment, trunk, peripheral and distribution system will be improved.
“This includes complete renovation and modernisation of Chandrawal Water Treatment Plant at a cost of Rs 2,018 crore and Wazirabad Water Treatment Plant at a cost of Rs 2,243 crore under externally aided projects to be partly funded by Japan International Cooperation Agency and ADB, respectively,” Jaitely said.