Chandigarh: The first budget of the Aam Aadmi Party government in Punjab was presented in the assembly on Monday. Along with other announcements, the government also announced the fulfillment of its first election guarantee through the budget. Finance Minister Harpal Cheema reiterated the promise of free electricity while presenting the budget. He said that from July 1, a provision has been made in the budget to provide free electricity up to 300 units to all households.
Finance Minister Harpal Cheema presented a budget of 1.55 lakh crores. No new tax was imposed during this period. The focus of the budget was on education, health and agriculture. Announcing free electricity, the Finance Minister said that the government is going to fulfill its first guarantee. Provision of 300 units of free electricity every month to every household in Punjab has been made in the budget.
Let us inform that Chief Minister Bhagwant Mann had said in April that the Punjab government would give 300 units of free electricity a month to every domestic electricity consumer of the state from July 1. Punjab is the second state after Delhi, where Aam Aadmi Party is giving free electricity. Free electricity was one of the main promises of the party during the assembly elections. Party leader Arvind Kejriwal had promised this during the election campaign in June last year.
According to a TOI report, AAP MLA Aman Arora had told that there will be some conditions for free electricity as well. If a domestic consumer spends more than 600 units of electricity in two months, then he will have to pay the full amount of electricity. In Punjab, electricity bill comes only every two months. Later, Chief Minister Bhagwant Mann told that Scheduled Castes, Backward Classes, Freedom Fighters and those living below the poverty line will get exemption. If he spends more than 600 units of electricity in two months, then he will have to pay only for that. That is, if they spend 640 or 645 units, then they will have to pay only 40 or 45 units.
CM Mann had also said that electricity rates will not be increased for industrial and commercial consumers. Free electricity will continue for agriculture as well. Due to this scheme of free electricity, there was a possibility of additional burden of Rs 5 thousand crore on the government. But even then the government had said that it would not pass the burden on the common people. And now the government has fulfilled its promise by not imposing any new tax in the budget.
Tags: AAP, Bhagwant Mann, Punjab
FIRST PUBLISHED : June 27, 2022, 14:01 IST