The Maharashtra government hiked the value added tax for liquor from 23.08% to 25.93% on the maximum retail price of country and foreign liquor. The announcement was made on Saturday when Maharashtra Finance Minister Sudhir Mungantiwar presented the state budget in the Assembly.
The VAT for card transactions has been reduced from 13.5% to nil. The tax on weekly lottery has been increased from Rs 70,000 to Rs 1 lakh.
Maharashtra’s growth rate in 2016-2017 was 9.4%, Mungantiwar said. “We aim to take this to at least double digit in the coming year,” he added. The Devendra Fadnavis-government has allocated Rs 8,233 crore for water resources, and Rs 2,812 for the prime minister’s irrigation scheme proposed for 2017-2018.
Amid protests from the Opposition members, Fadnavis said the government was planning to introduce more schemes for farmers. “While we help 31 lakh farmers to become debt-free to facilitate fresh crop loan, we have to provide some incentives to more than one crore farmers who have made loan repayment regularly,” he said.
The government has allocated Rs 17 crore for the Marathi language department in the state and over Rs 300 crore for building houses for police officials. For the construction of Bal Thackeray memorial and BR Ambedkar memorial, the state has allocated Rs 200 crore. The Fadnavis government also set aside Rs 500 crore for building 55,000 houses for Scheduled Caste and Scheduled Tribe under Ramai Awas Yojana.
To protest the budget presented by Mungantiwar, some Opposition MLAs burnt the copies of it outside the Assembly.