In the Left Democratic Front (LDF) government’s second complete budget on Thursday, Kerala’s Finance Minister KN Balagopal imposed a cess on petrol, diesel, and alcohol.
The budget aims to enact a cess on fuel, new cars, and alcohol in order to raise the power tariff and generate much-needed funds. Costs for fuel, diesel, alcohol, electricity, stamp duty, real estate, and vehicle registration are expected to rise.
On petrol and diesel, a social security levy of Rs 2 per liter would be applied. Balagopal stated in his budget speech that this is anticipated to generate an additional Rs 750 crore in revenue for a Social Security Seed Fund.
Balagopal suggested imposing a 20 rupee fee on each liquor bottle costing between 500 and 999 rupees. On bottles costing more than ₹1,000, a fee of ₹40 will be applied.According to Balagopal, the increased taxation will promote the development of extra-neutral alcohol. They will also aid in creating jobs, he noted.
The state is in financial difficulty, which is why the cess on alcohol and fuels was decided to be implemented. Despite having financial limitations this fiscal year, the state was not in debt, according to the state’s finance minister.
“The state is in a financial position to take more loans. The central government’s conservatism is still present. Kerala ought to be permitted to obtain more financing for construction projects. Kerala has overcome the crisis and has come a long way “Balagopal emphasized in his statement on the budget.
The budget was criticized by the opposing Congress because they said it will burden people more. “It is unfortunate that the average individual will be forced to foot the bill for the government’s financial mismanagement. He did not spare any industry. According to Congress leader V D Satheesan, the cess on petroleum products is unfair and will have an impact on all industries.
Many states are lowering fuel taxes, according to K Surendran, the state chief of the Bharatiya Janata Party, but Kerala has raised it once more. He stated that the state’s financial mess cannot be attributed to the Union government.
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