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Environment, education to be prime focus of Budget

NEW DELHI: Education and environment would be the main focus areas of the Delhi government budget.
While the Environment Department is working with experts to make a detailed report to present, the Education Department is keeping its emphasis on health and classroom infrastructure for the students.
"Environment would be a major focus this year. The department is looking at various aspects where funds would be needed and will present the report to the minister," said a source in the government.
Deputy Chief Minister Manish Sisodia who also holds the portfolio of the finance minister earlier asked all the department to prepare a report related to pollution.
These departments include environment, power, industries, transport and public works department.
The National Green Tribunal and the Center earlier presented different action plans for Delhi to curb pollution.
"We want to make our own action plan and that will need money hence the budget will focus on the environment," said the source.
The experts and the green bodies of the city have also agreed that the government should have the prime emphasis on the environment.
In the last Budget, it was noted that several steps have been taken to improve the environmental condition which includes afforestation, universal use of CNG by commercial vehicles, subsidy on newly purchased battery operated four-wheelers and two-wheelers, ban on use of plastic, better management of solid waste, treatment of wastewater and improvement of sewage system, etc.
Like the last year, this year also the government keep its focus on the educational development.
"Education is the focus area of the government. The chief minister asked the officials to provide category-wise estimates for the department," an official said.
Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal took stock of areas which are in need of funds and of those where funds could be reduced, he added.
The exercise for reviewing expenditures would continue for a week with Chief Minister Kejriwal likely to hold meetings with other departments.
In the budget of 2017-18, the education sector got 24 per cent of the total outlay with an allocation of Rs 11,300 crore, while the health sector got Rs 5,736 crore.
The government had announced last week that it would start a three-day department-wise discussion from February 7 on the achievement of the goal-oriented 'Outcome Budget 2017-18'.
All the departments were instructed to provide details of achievements in the third quarter of the outcome budget.
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