Ministries brace for budget cuts up to 24 per cent

With the government in expenditure cutting mode, various ministries are bracing for reduction in their annual budgets for the year 2013-14 which could be even up to 24 per cent of this fiscal.

While some ministries are reconciled to the anticipated budgetary cut by the Finance Ministry, a few others are cribbing about it.

According to indications to various ministries, the Finance Ministry would be slashing the annual budget of ministries in view of the poor financial health of the economy.

"The Finance Ministry and Planning Commission have said there will be a 24 per cent budget cut for all ministries," a union minister, who did not want to be named RPT who did not want to be named, told PTI.

When contacted for his comment amid apprehensions of budget cut, Union Rural Development Minister Jairam Ramesh said it is "inevitable" and that his Ministry will have to make do with whatever it gets.

"Budget cut is inevitable given the grim fiscal position. We have to make do with what we get," he said.

Ramesh seemed to be reconciled even though media reports had suggested that he had written to Finance Minister P Chidambaram, requesting that there should be no cut in budget for his ministry.

Rural Development Ministry was allocated a budget of Rs 85,000 crore during the 2012-13 fiscal.

Tribal Affairs Minister V Kishore Chandra Deo refused to get into specifics but said "if such a huge cut" is done in the budget for a ministry like his, "then hardly anything will be left for it".

Tribal Affairs Ministry was sanctioned a budget of Rs 4,000 crore approximately for the current financial year.

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