Bhubaneswar,26/5 ( Odisha Samachar/Abhisek Mohanty)-: Odisha Budget and Accountability Centre (OBAC) today has organised a State level consultation on Implication of Fourteenth Finance Commission on Social Sector Budgeting in Odisha with an objective to share the issues related to Fourteenth Finance Commission recommendation and State Finances and discuss the impact on social sector intervention of the State.
P. K. Sahoo, Chairman, CYSD delivered the welcome address and shared the objective of the workshop.
In his key note address, Prof. Vinod Vyasulu, Founder & Former Director, Centre for Budget & Policy Studies, Bengaluru spoke about Implication of 14th Finance Commission on State Finances- focusing on ability of the State to adequately Finance Social Sector Development Programmes. He said “States are going to get more flexibility to finance their social sector development programmes. The existing federal structure and the imposition of GST (Goods and Service Tax) need to be re-looked.” States should be more focused on generating revenues from own sources for adequately finance the social sector, he added.
Speaking on the occasion, S. C. Hota IAS (Retd) said “Central Government has not scrapped the Twelve Five Year Plan while it has already abolished the Planning Commission. It creates a dilemma on the implementation of the development programmes”. Infrastructure development must be corroborating along with the Social Sector development programmes. The State must focus on long term development schemes rather than the populist approach, he said.
Prof. Sudhakar Panda, Chairman, 3rd State Finance Commission said that although the State now will enjoy more financial flexibility after FFC recommendation but the real development lies in strengthening the rural and urban local bodies in terms fund, functions and functionaries.”
Panchanan Kanungo, Former Finance Minister said ” Odisha has been one of the States to receive more central funds in past but the utilization remained slow. Now it’s the call of the hour to focus on specific component wise intervention in social sector like health. 50 percent of the revenue generated from disinvestment to the public sector companies in Odisha to be spent towards social sector development of the State.”
Prof. Binayak Rath, Former Vice Chancellor, Utkal University emphasised that considering the contextual changes after the FFC recommendation, the development criteria of agriculture and allied sectors to be revisited and strategies for the same to be redesigned.
Prof. Bhagabat Patra from Berhampur University said “The formula for the horizontal devolution of central taxes to the States not to be uniform and to be varied for different States.”
The programme was concluded by Jagadananda, Founder-Mentor, CYSD, who stated that Odisha is having list of backward districts. The ailing factors for underdevelopment to be identified and the State should channelize its resources towards addressing these factors.
Implication of Fourteenth Finance Commission on Social Sector Budget in Odisha, the study conducted by OBAC of CYSD shows that although the State will suffer a financial loss of Rs. 5874.44 crore as a consequence but there will also be a gain of Rs. 7391 crore as a result of vertical tax devolution. This study projects a net gain of Rs. 1516.56 crore by Odisha Government.