As many as 50 public sector undertakings (PSUs) of the Gujarat government posted cumulative profit of Rs 5,113.94 crore, while 19 such state run entities incurred losses of Rs 3,813.93 crore in 2017-18 according to a CAG report tabled in the Assembly. The report noted that Gujarat State Petroleum Corporation Ltd (GSPC) posted a loss of over Rs 1,500 crore the highest among the 19 loss-making state PSUs.
The report of the Comptroller and Auditor General of India (CAG) on ‘State Finances’ for the financial year 2017-18 was tabled on July 26, the last day of the Budget session of the Gujarat Assembly. The CAG report was based on the finalised accounts, up to September 2018, of 73 working state-run PSUs. Of these 73 working PSUs, 50 earned profit, 1 incurred losses, while the remaining four state-run enterprises reported neither profits nor losses.
The major contributors to the profit were Gujarat State Petronet Ltd (Rs 1010.81 crore), Gujarat Energy Transmission Corporation Ltd (Rs 668.81 crore), Gujarat State Electricity Corporation Ltd (Rs 596.07 crore), Gujarta Minerals Development Corporation Ltd (Rs 556.93 crore) and Gujarat Gas Ltd (Rs 462.84 crore).
The major loss-making state PSUs were GSPC (Rs 1,564 64 crore), Sardar Sarovar Narmada Nigam Ltd (Rs 1,075.8 crore), Bhavnagar Energy Company Ltd (Rs 617.31 crore) Gujarat State Road Transport Corporation (Rs 264.81 crore) and Gujarat Water Infrastructure Ltd (Rs 137.53 crore), the report said.
The CAG expressed displeasure over the government’s submission that of the 50 profit-making state PSUs, only six had paid dividend to the Gujarat government. “The Finance Department stated that standin instructions were issued in 1994 by which all the profit making PSUs were required to pay dividend to the government regularly.
“However, the department did not furnish the reason for non-payment of dividend by the remaining 44 PSUs despite the instructions being issued in 1994,” the CAG noted. Further, the national auditor also suggested the state government formulate a “suitable dividend policy for PSUs” in view of the fact that the dividend of Rs 97.89 crore receive from six profit-making entities for 2017-18 indicates “negligible return of 1.91 per cent”.
The report said the investment in these 73 working state PSUs increased from Rs 1.10 lakh crore in 2013-14 t over Rs 1.56 lakh crore in 2017-18.