The Centre’s announcement on cutting corporate tax by 10 per cent was expected to impact the State in terms of its revenue share from the Central government, Chief Minister K Chandrashekhar Rao said.

Replying to the discussion on the Appropriation Bill in the Assembly on Sunday, he said the budget reflects the reality of the economic slowdown in the country. He pointed out that the government had included the provision for a Rs 10,000-crore Special Development Fund for which money was to be accrued through land sale.

“Nobody knows how the economic situation will play out. If it gets better, then allocations will increase, if it gets worse, the government may have to consider appropriate measures. We are not God’s children. We depend on the Centre,” he said. Despite these challenges, he said the government would try and keep its promises.

Chandrashekhar Rao also said the SDF was specifically meant to overcome such unforeseen developments as the possible fall in State’s share from the Centre after corporate tax cut. The government had won possession of 100 acres of land in Kokapet and hopes to win the case with respect to land in Poppalguda. The SDF would be under the control of the Chief Minister and would be used to adjust shortfalls to the extent possible that might arise because of economic slowdown.

Referring to Congress Legislature Party leader Mallu Bhatti Vikramarka’s charges that the State was taking loans way beyond its means, the Chief Minister wanted to know if projects built in the past by the then Congress governments were constructed without taking loans. 

“There is a long list. Was Nagarjunasagar Dam built without loans? Or was SRSP built without loans? In the past, all loans were routed through the Centre but now there are more avenues. It was Congress Prime Minister PV Narasimha Rao’s reforms that the country’s economy got better. There is no need for Vikramarka to be worried about the loans the State government has taken or will take as required. We are investing the money productively,” he said.

Vikramarka had earlier pointed out that by his rough calculations, the State may end up requiring Rs 50,000 crore a year just for debt servicing and paying back the principal loan amounts by the end of the second term of the TRS government. Allaying these fears, the Chief Minister said the loans taken so far would be recouped in just one or two crop seasons with the extended irrigation facilities in the State.

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