cag: Delhi govt’s debt increased by 7% in four years up to 2019-20: CAG report

The Delhi government’s debt increased by nearly seven per cent in the four-year period up to 2019-20 although it maintained a revenue surplus, according to a CAG audit report tabled in the Assembly on Tuesday. The debt increased by Rs 2,268.93 crore (6.98 per cent) from Rs 32,497.91 crore at the beginning of 2015-16 to Rs 34,766.84 crore at the end of 2019-20, said the report.

The Comptroller and Auditor General (CAG) report of the year 2021 on state finances for the year ending March 2020 was presented in the Assembly by Deputy Chief Minister Manish Sisodia.

The audit report on state finances provides an analytical review of the annual accounts of the Government of NCT of Delhi and functioning of Public Sector Undertakings for the year ending 31 March 2020.

The revenue surplus of Delhi government in 2019-20 was Rs 7,499 crore indicating that revenue receipts of the government were sufficient to meet the revenue expenditure, said the report.

The Delhi government has been able to maintain revenue surplus largely on account of pension liabilities of its employees being borne by the central government, it pointed out.

In addition, expenditure of Delhi Police is also borne by the Ministry of Home Affairs, Government of India, it added.

Revenue receipts grew by Rs 4,023 crore (9.33 per cent) over the previous year. In the year 2019-20, about 79.90 per cent of revenue receipts came from government’s own resources while Grants-in-Aid contributed 20.10 per cent.

The share of NCTD’s own tax revenue to total revenue receipts decreased from 86.36 per cent in 2015-16 to 77.58 per cent in 2019-20.

Expenditure of government on subsidies increased from Rs 1,867.61 crore in 2015-16 to Rs 3,592.94 crore in 2019-20 (92.38 per cent). In 2019-20 expenditure on subsidies increased by 41.85 per cent over the previous year, the report said.

Financial assistance to local bodies and others increased by 7.59 per cent from Rs 15,087.22 crore in 2018-19 to Rs 16,232.97 crore in 2019-20.

The increase in investment in 2019-20 over the previous year was Rs 150 crore on account on investment made in Delhi Metro Rail Corporation Ltd. The return on investment was 0.08 per cent in 2019-20 whereas the government paid interest at the average rate of 8.14 per cent on its borrowings during 2019-20, said the CAG report.

The Delhi government is not empowered to raise loans from the open market. Loans and advances received from the Government of India comprise its debt receipts, added the report.

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