The First Delhi Legislative Assembly

(Budget Session)

18th MARCH, 1996

           Mr. Speaker, Sir and Hon’ble Members,

  I have great pleasure in welcoming you to this the first session of the year, 1996, which is also the third Budget Session of the Legislative Assembly of Delhi.
  My Government assumed office in December, 1993 and since then has spared no efforts to conceive and implement programmes for the benefit of the citizens of Delhi, which is one of the fastest growing metropolises in the world. Recognising this fact my Government has given the highest priority to development of infrastructural facilities especially in the areas of Delhi such as J.J.clusters, rural areas, unauthorised colonies and Trans-Yamuna area. Special emphasis is being given to supply of electricity, water, transport including roads, bridges and fly-overs, and installation of water and sewage treatment plants.
  The Trans-Yamuna Area Development Board after examining the existing development plans for the area has also taken up various special programmes and schemes for implementation so as to reduce the disparities in the development in Trans-Yamuna area as compared to other parts of Delhi. The Government attaches great importance to the Schemes being implemented by the Board and the amount allocated for this purpose duing the year 1995-96 is Rs. 40 crores, and no reduction in this outlay was effected in spite of the general cut in the overall Plan outlay.
  My Government is committed to the development of the rural areas of Delhi. A Mini Master Plan for Planned and integrated development of rural areas has been drawn up involving, mainly construction of physical, social, economic and ecological infrastructure. The physical planning of the existing 195 villages have been divided into three tiers-15 villages to be developed as growth centres, 33 to be developed as growth points and the remaining 147 villages as basic villages. As a gesture to the farmers and artisans living in the rural areas, the Government has decided as a one-time measure to write off the loans amounting to Rs. 2 crores granted by the Delhi State Co-Operative Bank.
  My Government continues to show its utmost concern for the welfare of those living in the jhuggi-jhonpri clusters and slums and has made vigorous efforts to provide sanitation and health care as also provision of safe drinking water in these clusters. Improvement of environment and hygienic condition and provision of sulabh Sauchalayas have also been receiving the highest priority. During the year, 556 WCC/urinals were completed. Similarly, works of improvement and construction of brick flooring and drainage were completed in 184 J.J.Clusters and are in progress in another 64 clusters. Mobile dispensaries for these areas has also ensured that adequate medical facilities are available to the persons living in these clusters.
  It may be recalled that in May, 1994, my Government had entered into a historic agreement on water sharing with the Government of Haryana, Uttar Pradesh, Rajasthan and Himachal Pradesh, as a result of which we were to get 724 BCM water. It is a matter of gratification that recently the Supreme court has upheld our long-standing demand for getting as equitable share in the raw water for our various water treatment plants. This should help us tide over some of the problems we face during the Summer months.
  A 50 MGD plant at Hyderpur was commissioned in May, 1995. Work of construction of two water treatment plants, one of 40 MGD at Nangloi and the other of 20 MGD at Bawana is also at hand. Further, with a view to improve water pressure and rationalise distribution of water, construction of underground reservoirs and booster pumping stations have been taken up at a number of places. These works at Shastri Nagar, Holambi Kalan and Sanjay Gandhi Transport Nagar are in an advanced stage of completion. 91 tubewells were installed of which 16 were in J.J.Clusters. A length of 313 kms. Of new water mains were laid in regularised and unauthorised colonies.
  The construction work on 13 sewage treatment plants have been started. It is expected that once these plants are completed in the next two to three years, the sewage treatment capacity will increase from 280 MGD TO 499 MGD.
My Government is making every effort to increase the generation and streamlining the distribution of electricity. The maximum demand of power in Delhi touched 1984 M.W. in January, 1996. The anticipated demand in the year 1996-97 is 2200 M.W. In order to meet this demand steps have been taken to ensure maximum generation from DESU’s own generating stations. The Union Minister of Power had been requested to ensure availability of DESU’s full share from the allocated and unallocated power of Central Sector Generating Stations. Apart from this, Delhi’s own generation will also be increased by 104 M.W. with the commissioning of the waste heat recovery plant at the existing Gas Turbine Station. In addition a Combined Cycle Gas Turbine Station with a capacity of about 450 M.W. at Bawana in Delhi is also to be set up in the Private Sector, the power purchase agreement for which is under finalisation. Close monitoring is being done with regard to availability of critical items so that breakdown of electricity supply is minimised. Addition/augmentation of the transmission and distribution network at all voltage levels has been carried out and bout 200 MVA of distribution transformer capacity shall be added by April, 1996 in preparation to meet the summer load. The burning rate of Distribution Transformers has been progressively brought down. Several load management measures are also proposed to be enforced to restrict peak demand.
Certain changes have been made in the commercial policy following which the average monthly realisation of DESU has improved from around Rs. 90 crores to Rs. 120 crores. It is expected to go up to an average of around Rs. 130 crores during 1996-97. In the meantime, DESU has also prepared a five year Action plan 1995-2000 A.D. for Fiscal and Functional improvements which is under consideration. It envisages gradual improvement in all functions particularly reduction of T & D Losses and converting a revenue deficit into surplus during this period.
During this last year the Government have taken measures to support and coordinate with the Municipal Corporation of Delhi and other local authorities in the enforcement of building control. Several important court cases have been resolved in our favour making possible the exemplary demolition of some major violations. Teams at zonal level comprising officers of the local authorities concerned, Police and senior officers at the level of ADM have been formed to coordinate and monitor. It will be the endeavour of my Government to continue this drive, and effect a qualitative change in the situation.
Vehicular pollution and congestion on Delhi roads has been causing the Government much concern. It is, therefore, the intention of my Government to immediately take measures, both short-term and long-term which would help in both bringing down the level of vehicular pollution and also reducing the congestion on the roads of Delhi so that travelling on roads is no longer a nightmare. To reduce the congestion at the ISBT, the Government has opened two new ISBTs, one at Sarai Kale Khan on the Ring Road and the other at Anand Vihar in the Trans-Yamuna Area.
As a long term measure, the Government has accorded priority to the development of Mass Rapid Transit System. A company in the name and style of Delhi Metro Rail Corporation has been formed in May, 1995 as the implementing agency for the Mass Rapid Transit System. The financing pattern of MRTS is presently under consideration.
Encouraged by the excellent response and the success of this experiment, my government has further decided to immunise all children against six common diseases through a special immunisation programme. We are also launching a major drive against Malaria and Tuberculosis. This is in addition to the special programme launched to restore eye-sight to the victims of Cataract. The Government has also taken up Matri Suraksha Abhiyan which aims at providing ante-natal care to all pregnant women of Delhi with special emphais on immunisation, complete check during pregnancy, counselling on family welfare, diet and other related matter. OPD services have been started in Babu Jagjivan Ram Hospital in Jahangirpuri and Guru Gobind Singh Hospital at Radhuvir Nagar. In-patient services have been started at Rao Tula Ram Memorial Hospital, Zafarpur in Trans-Yamuna. The work of construction of a 100 bedded hospital at Pooth Khurd has commenced.
With a view to give a meaningful push to the traditional indigenous system of Medicine, my Government proposed to set up a fullfledged Directorate of Indian Systems of Medicine and Homoeopathy. A 30-bedded Ayurvedic unit has been commissioned in Deen Dayal Upadhayay Hospital. Treatment through Yoga has also been introduced in a number of hospitals under the Government of Delhi.
Education which holds the key to economic growth and social transformation of any society has also been receiving the closest attention. The effort of my Government has been to ensure that the not so fortunate young or old are not deprived of opportunities to become literate in the modern world. The focus, therefore, has been on mass literacy, non-formal education and improvement of equality of education at the elementary level. In this context, the implementation of the national programme on “Education For All” is of special significance.
During the year 1995-96, seven new schools were opened, 24 were upgraded while 11 were bifurcated. Another 19 were converted into Composite/Sarvodaya Vidyalaya. Education is free for all the students upto Class XII in Government and Government aided Schools. A scheme for free mid-day meal to all students upto primary level has been launched in all the recognised schools of Delhi. Free transport facilities are being given to girl students in rural areas. Recruitment of different categories of teachers has been streamlined and made more transparent.
One college for students of B.Ed. and another for Applied Science has also been set up.
During 1995-96, as many as 300 Fair Price Shops were opened in different parts of Delhi. Public Distribution System in the capital continues to be under the close scrutiny of the Government with a view to ensure that there is no shortage of supply of essential commodities and that the inflation is kept under check. The number of Circle Offices has been increased from 61 to 70. Two district Consumer Forums, one each in East and West Delhi are to be set up. My Government also proposes to market iodised salt through the fair price shops in Delhi to combat adverse effect on health because of iodine deficiency.
The Government is committed to promote the educational and economic interest of the weaker section of the people, particularly of the Scheduled Castes/Scheduled Tribes and other Backward Classes, and to protect them from social injustice and all forms of exploitation. Various schemes for the socio-economic development of the Scheduled Caste and also income generating schemes for them are being implemented through the Delhi Scheduled Castes Financial & Development Corporation. Reservation in services is also being made for the Other Backward Classes.
My Government continues to support the policy for having pollution free light and service industries. We are also committed to shift to the National Capital Region noxious and hazardous industries, while in the 28 industrial estates every efforts is being made to instal the maximum number of common effluent treatment plants so that the pollution levels are brought down supply.
The industries department organised a mini Trade Fair in January, 1996 at which commodities manufactured by S.S.I units in Delhi were displayed. A similar fair is being organised to promote export of handloom and handicrafts articles manufactured in Delhi. Such Fairs are expected to increase the exports of good manufactured in Delhi.
Major Employment Exchanges of Pusa, Darya Ganj and R.K.Puram have been computerised and it is proposed to computerise the remaining Employment Exchanges also so that the entire process becomes transparent.
Guru Nanak Dev Co-education Polytechnic has been started to meet the demand for Computer and Electronics and Communication Engineers. About 30 students are proposed to be taken in each discipline. Similarly, 4 year degree programme in manufacturing process and Automation Engineering has been introduced in Delhi institute of Technology.
Mobilisation of Resourses:
My Government has adopted a progressive tax policy based on optimal rationalisation of tax rates. As a result of the Government’s policies, in 1994-95 there was a record increase of 26.71% in tax revenue. The buoyancy has continued in 1995-96 also, with a collection of Rs. 1264.68 crores in Sales Tax from April to February, an increase of 27 percent over the corresponding period. Excise revenue has also shown an upward trend and the collection till February, 1996 was Rs. 304.65 crores. Similarly, revenue from Entertainment Tax has increased upto February, 1996 was Rs. 32.32 crores.
The Delhi Tax On Entry of Motor Vehicles into Local Areas Act, 1994 and its Rules have come into operation from 15.12.1995. This will block leakage of tax on motor vehicles because of low rate of taxes in some of the neighbouring states. I am happy to inform this august House that in the first two months itself, about Rs. 2 crores have been collected after implementation of this measure.
The outlay for the annual Plan for 1995-96 for the Government of NCT of Delhi was Rs. 1720 crores including Rs. 270 crores as Central assistance. The outlay however was restricted to Rs. 1307 crores because of non-realisation of Central Plan assistance of Rs. 225 crores on account of adjustment towards the dues of NTPC, an increase in non-plan expenditure of Rs. 172 crores in the repayment of loan and interest to the Government of India and payment of D.A. and interim Relief to the employees of my Government. The action of Central Government in not releasing the Central Plan assistance have adversely affected the implementation of many of our important development programmes.
The question of assumption of budgetary responsibility for Delhi Police by the Government of India has been under consideration for some time, and recently the Government of India has informed us that they would assume the budgetary responsibility for Delhi Police from July, 1996. As a result the balance of current revenue on non-plan account in the budget of Delhi is expected to go up substantially and so will the plan size. This would now enable us to implement schemes in many of our high priority areas such as vehicular emission control, Mass Rapid Transit System, traffic engineering works including fly-overs, sub-ways and the like, modernisation and strengthening of power supply distribution system.
During the year 1995 the law and order situation in Delhi was well under control and peaceful condition maintained. No major incident of communal disturbances was reported. 45 terrorists including 6 from Punjab and 37 from Jammu and Kashmir were arrested. There were seven cases of bomb blasts.
My Government is committed to providing clean and efficient administration. In this context, the Lok Ayukt Bill has received the assent of the President and Government hopes to set-up the Lok Ayukt Organisation in the near future. Greater emphasis will also be laid on simplification of rules and procedures so that maximum transparency is ensured. Further, in the absence of elected Civic Bodies the Government has decided to set up Advisory Committees under the Chairmanship of MLAs in organisation such as DESU and DWS & SDU to ensure speedy disposal of pubic grievances and greater transparency in the working of these organisations. During the year 1995-96, our Anti Corruption Branch had upto February registered 53 cases of trap and arrested 62 persons. Prosecution was launched in 24cases, while departmental action was recommended against 86 persons.
The Government of India has constituted New Delhi Municipal Council in November, 1995. The Council includes a Chairperson, three MLAs and five officials.
In this session of the Assembly, besides, the presentation of Appropriation (Vote on Account) Bill, 1996, and Appropriation No. 1 Bill 1996, Legislative Business proposed to be transacted includes the Punjab Courts (Delhi Amendment) Bill, 1996, Provincial Small Causes Courts Act( Amendment) Bill, 1996 and the National Capital Territory of Delhi Members of Legislative Assembly (Removal of Disqualifications) Bill,1996.
I have tried to focus on the achievements of my Government during the current year. Unfortunately, it is not possible at this juncture to give any details of the plan programmes for 1996-97 since the Annual Plan is yet to be finalised and the regular budget is likely to be presented in July, 1996 after the General Elections. In the mean time, I have no doubt that with your active cooperation and the commitment and hard work of the officers at all levels the Government will continue to implement its programmes and policies for the well being of the people of Delhi.
May I conclude by wishing you all success in your deliberations.