ONI Bureau: While Odisha spends lavishly on Hockey World Cup 2018 and many other similar events and conclaves, all is not well in the State, which is clearly visible when a ‘Special Category Status’ is demanded by the CM himself. The debt burden of the State will touch Rs 91,943 crore by the end of Financial Year 2018-19. And, it was revealed by Finance Minister Sashi Bhushan Behera in reply to a query by Rourkela MLA Dilip Ray in Odisha Assembly.
According to Finance Minister, the debt burden is increasing every passing year. Debt Burden of Odisha in 2017-18 was Rs 73,684.66 crore. However, this year, it would be Rs 91,943.68 crore. At the end of FY 2006-07, the debt amount was Rs 37,249.51 crore. In the last 11 years, there has been an unprecedented 60% jump in Odisha’s debt.
Interestingly, the Government has taken a loan of Rs 5,701.07 crore in the first six months of this financial year. MLA Dilip Ray expressed his apprehensions that if it continues like this, the debt burden may cross Rs 1 lakh crore by the end of next financial year of 2019-20. He urged the Government to take positive and constructive long-term measures to reduce the debt burden of Odisha.