Thiruvanathapuram :As Finance Minister T M Thomas Isaac prepares to present his last full budget this tenure, official figures point to an alarming fall in Kerala's revenue receipts. The finance minister himself admitted in the Assembly on Tuesday that the state was facing a severe liquidity crunch.
Provisional figures released by the comptroller and auditor general shows that at the end of December 2019 only Rs 62,328.34 crore, or 54 per cent, of Rs 1,15,361.22 crore (the estimated revenue for 2019-20) had come into the state's kitty.
Even last fiscal, considered one of the worst in terms of revenue collection, Kerala had managed to pocket 62.5 per cent of its estimated revenue by December.
Isaac absolved himself of all blame. Instead, he attributes this mostly to the general economic slowdown and a series of corporate-friendly steps that had devastated the finances of the centre.
Isaac said the huge pay out to the corporates in Nirmala Sitharaman's first Budget last year had squeezed the tax revenues of the centre. The union finance minister had reduced the corporate tax on companies with a turnover of up to Rs 400 crore to 25 per cent in the Budget presented on July 5, 2019. This had knocked down the effective tax rate on over 99 per cent of companies to 27.8 per cent."Central transfers to the states, as a result, would come down. It would also shrink the share of states in the central tax," he said.