‘T.N.’s cumulative revenue deficit hit ₹1,31,000 cr. in 5 years’
DMK MLA and IT wing secretary P.T.R. Palanivel Thiaga Rajan on Monday said the Tamil Nadu government’s Vetrinadai Podum Tamizhagam (Tamil Nadu marches on successfully) campaign was a farce since the State’s cumulative revenue deficit had touched a whopping ₹1,31,000 crore in five years.
“This is unheard of in any State or country in the world. That is why we say leadership matters. I do not understand the slogan of the government that says Tamil Nadu is on the path of progress,” he said in a pre-Budget analysis. The government is set to present its interim Budget on Tuesday.
Mr. Thiaga Rajan said the DMK government, led by Kalaignar (M. Karunanidhi), achieved a revenue surplus of ₹2,386 crore between 2006 and 2011, while it became a ₹17,057 crore deficit under Jayalalithaa. “People are irritated by Chief Minister Edappadi K. Palaniswami and his Deputy [in government] O. Panneerselvam’s claims,” he said.
Mr. Thiaga Rajan said while States like Odisha and Chhattisgarh were able to generate revenues through mines, Tamil Nadu, which was blessed with similar natural resources, could generate only ₹900 crore through the Tamil Nadu Minerals Limited (TAMIN). “The situation in Tamil Nadu speaks of its poor fiscal management,” he said.
Citing extensively from the 15th Finance Commission report, he said in the last 10 years under the AIADMK rule, the State’s revenues had been decimated and it had resulted in increased debt accumulation.
“State borrowings have mostly been utilised to finance interest payments and not for development projects and infrastructure development. The debt has reached ₹5 lakh crore. Its own revenue has come down from 10.59% during the DMK regime to 7.2% now,” he said.
According to him, manufacturing and construction activities had slowed down from 10.9% between 2005 and 2011 to 4.6% between 2011 and 2017.
“It is explained by the study on State finances by the Madras School of Economics. This is a major concern because both sectors are significant for employment generation,” Mr. Thiaga Rajan said.