Union Budget 2013-14: Allocation of Funds to the Defence Sector

In the Union Budget 2013-14, which was tabled in the Lok Sabha by the Union Finance Minister P. Chidambaram, there is a hike of 14% on Defence Budget over the last year 2012-13, thus promising more funds required for national security.

Some of the prominent features of the defence budget 2013-14 are as under:

• The Revenue expenditure budget increase for defence is relatively less than the overall Non-Plan Revenue expenditure budget growth between RE 2012-13 and BE 2013-14.

• Gross Revenue budget for Navy declined from 12748 crore rupees in BE 2012-13 to 12394 crore rupees in BE 2013-14 (there are reductions under salaries, transportation and miscellaneous heads while there are negligible increases for repairs & re-fitment works and in respect of Coast Guard).

• Capital budget support for the Indian Coast Guard will be less in 2013-14 –740 crore rupees in BE 2013-14 vis-à-vis. 899 crore rupees in BE 2012-13.

• The value of supplies of stores (not classified as Capital assets) from Ordnance factories to the Services will only marginally increase from 11213 crore rupees as per BE 2012-13 to 12141crore rupees provided in BE 2013-14.

• Ex-Servicemen Contributory Health Scheme (ECHS) – a welfare oriented organisation for ex-Servicemen and their dependants in the defence set-up – has been allocated less budget (Capital and Revenue taken together) for the next year as compared to the actual expenditure of 2011-12 and RE of 2012-13.

• Virtually no funds have been earmarked for development of prototype stores in association with indigenous trade sources (a token provision of Rs. one crore has been made for the next year as against 29 crore rupees actually spent in 2011-12 and a BE 2012-13 of 89 crore rupees)
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