Every assumption made in the 2020-21 Union Budget, presented in February, would have to be reviewed in view of the coronavirus pandemic, said Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman on Saturday.
"Every assumption made in the budget 2020 (2020-21) are at stage where unless I review them they are not going to hold good," the Finance Minister said.
In an interaction with Nalin Kohli, Bharatiya Janata Party national spokesperson, she said despite the unforeseen situation and fall in revenue, the central government had devolved in April and May every budgetary proportion allocated to the states.
She said revenues had come down not just for the states but also for the Centre. “Notwithstanding these realities, I have devolved in April and May everything that I have to devolve as per the assumptions placed in the budget of February 2020.”
On the criticism by some state governments that the Centre has not paid attention to them, Sitharaman said, "Its completely untrue and not acceptable at all."
She said the situation was "definitely different" from what she had presented in the budget.
She also said that the Centre has devolved all the stipulated money to the states in April and May as per the Union Budget for the financial year 2020-21.
She said that it was wrong to accuse the Centre of not paying attention to the states in the current pandemic situation.
On the criticism by some state governments of lack of attention from the Centre, Sitharaman said,
“It's completely untrue and not acceptable at all.”
“The assumptions made in the Budget are already in a state where we will have to review them. Every assumption made in the Budget (2020-21) is at a stage where unless I review them, they are not going to hold good,” she said.
Sitharaman also said that revenues have come down not just for the states, but also for the Centre, and “notwithstanding these realities, I have devolved in April and May everything that I had to devolve as per the assumptions placed in the Budget of February 2020.”
The Finance Minister noted that the present situation now was “definitely different” from what it was when she presented the Budget.
She also stressed that the Prime Minister has heard from the states and is of the view that the states are in the frontline in the battle against the pandemic.
“During the lockdown period itself, he has had five engagements with the Chief Ministers of different states,” he said..