The fiscal deficit of Himachal Pradesh has increased to Rs 3,870 crore in the financial year 2017-18 from Rs 2948 crore in 2016-2017, showing an increase of 31.27%.
The report of Comptroller and Auditor General (CAG), tabled by the Chief Minister, Jai Ram Thakur in the state Assembly, said the state is on a fiscal correction path but has not yet amended the Fiscal Responsibility and Budget Management (FRBM) Act as recommended by the 14th Finance Commission.
As per the CAG report, the surplus of the state has consistently declined from Rs 1,137 crore in 2015-16 To Rs 314 crore in 2017-18 despite heavy devolution from the Government of India.
The overall fiscal liabilities at the end of the year were Rs 51,030 crore with a growth of 8% over the previous year. Fiscal liabilities were 37.55% of the GSDP and 1.86 times of the revenue receipts, the report said.
During the next ten years state has to repay a market loan of Rs 20,874 crore that is 96.75% out of the total outstanding loan of Rs 21,574 crore with interest amounting to Rs 9,483 crore.
According to the CAG report, an expenditure of Rs 37,811.09 crore was incurred against total grants and appropriations of Rs 41, 267 crore. It pointed to the delays in submission of utilization certificates, as a result of which proper utilization of grants could not be ensured.
The report mentioned that a large number of autonomous bodies did not prepare their final accounts for a considerable period, as a result, their financial position could not be assessed.