States Weekly: February 21, 2024

Big News: Assam, Bihar, Himachal Pradesh, Karnataka, and Tamil Nadu releases State Budgets 2024-25; Odisha reduces electricity tariffs for domestic consumers; Jharkhand increases monthly free power quotas for domestic consumers to 125 units while separately releasing a net metering policy for rooftop solar; Arunachal Pradesh achieves 100 percent saturation of home tap water connections; and more.

Health 

Tripura launches the Mukhya Mantri Jan Arogya Yojana (MMJAY). The universal health insurance scheme is expected to cover 415,000 families in the state for cashless medical treatment of up to $6,023 per family per year. The scheme will cover families including government employees, who are not covered under the central government’s health insurance scheme. Source: Assam Tribune; In detail: Press release (in Kokborok)

Maharashtra signs a $481.83 million loan agreement with the Asian Development Bank (ADB) to enhance medical facilities in the state. The first tranche of $144.55 million has been approved in principle. The funding will be used to improve existing medical infrastructure and to build a new 500-bed hospital in Dharashiv. Source: Construction week; In detail: Press release

Climate Change & Energy

Delhi Electricity Regulatory Commission (DERC) releases the draft amendments to the DERC (Group Net Metering and Virtual Net Metering for Renewable Energy) Guidelines, 2019. As per the amendments, the distribution licensees are now mandated to cover the capital expenditure related to service line cum development (SLD) and network augmentation for projects. Source: Solar Quarter; In detail: Draft amendment

Maharashtra Electricity Regulatory Commission (MERC) issues guidelines regarding the Generic Renewable Energy Tariff 2024-25 under the MERC (Renewable Energy Tariff) Regulations, 2019. These regulations, set the framework for determining tariffs for various renewable energy technologies such as wind energy, solar PV, biomass, and hybrid projects. Source: Solar quarter; In detail: Draft order

Maharashtra irrigation department and the state policy think tank- Maharashtra Institution for Transformation (MITRA) proposes the Maharashtra Climate Resilient Development Project (MCRDP). The project aims to address the concerns related to the floods in Kolhapur and Sangli district and the plan to divert flood waters to drought-prone areas of the state. The World Bank has approved $481.83 million for MCRDP. Source: Times of India

Jharkhand State Electricity Regulatory Commission (JSERC) releases the Jharkhand (Group Net Metering and Virtual Net Metering) Regulations, 2024. The regulations streamline the net metering and virtual net metering practices in the state, describe the concepts, their application to the consumers and provide a grievance redressal mechanism for consumers. Source: Saur Energy; In detail: JSERC (Group Net Metering and Virtual Net Metering) Regulations, 2024

Jharkhand announces its decision to increase the monthly free power limit for residents to 125 units. Source: Construction World; In detail: Press release

Odisha Electricity Regulatory Commission (OERC) issues an order reducing the power tariff for domestic consumers by ~$0.0012 in each slab for financial year 2024-25. Source: The Week; In detail: Tariff Order

Finance

Nothing critical to report this week.

Industrial Policy & Business Regulations  

Nothing critical to report this week.

Land Acquisition & Labor Regulations  

Odisha notifies the Odisha Apartment (Ownership and Management) Rules, 2024. The rules provide for registration and formation of an association of allottees and provision for modification of byelaws of the association of the allottees or apartment owners among others. The rules aim to regulate the use of common areas in an apartment and create a common fund to meet common expenses for the same. Source: Pragativadi; In detail: Odisha Apartment (Ownership and Management) Rules, 2024

Infrastructure & Governance

Bihar tables the State Budget 2024-25 with an outlay of $33.6 billion. The budget is focused on poverty alleviation in the state. Source: Business Standard; In detail: Budget Highlights

Karnataka releases the State Budget 2024-25 with an outlay of $44.7 billion. Key programmes include the Rajiv Gandhi Entrepreneurship Programme — an early-stage funding programme to promote innovative endeavours and start-ups by students and entrepreneurs, a new initiative to support early-stage women entrepreneurs, and a programme to promote agri-startups in the State. Source: The Hindu; In detail: Budget Highlights

Tamil Nadu releases the State Budget 2024-25 with an outlay of $41.9 billion. The budget targets seven key areas including improving physical infrastructure, fostering job opportunities, enhancing social and healthcare facilities, boosting district export initiatives, refining financial mechanisms, promoting educational excellence, and advocating environmental conservation. Source: Times of India; In detail: Tamil Nadu Budget Speech 2024-25

Assam releases the State Budget 2024-25 with an outlay of $16.48 billion. The budget includes onetime incentives aimed to benefit 1 million girl students, as well as grants for women self-help groups. Source: Hindustan Times; In detail: Assam Budget Speech 2024-25

Himachal Pradesh releases the State Budget 2024-25 with an outlay of $7.04 billion. Revenue receipts in the year 2024-25 are estimated at $5.07 billion and total revenue expenditure is estimated at $5.62 billion. The fiscal deficit is estimated at $1.3 billion which is 4.75 percent of the State's gross domestic product. Source: Times of India; In detail: Budget speech 2024-25

Sikkim announces the Sikkim Regularisation Policy 2024 aimed at regularising employment for various categories of workers in the state. As per the policy 20,000 job vacancies currently under the temporary hiring category will be changed to the permanent category by February 25, 2024, thereby warranting the workers full employee rights. Source: India Today; In detail: Press release

Uttarakhand approves the Uttarakhand Excise Policy 2024 with a revenue target of $534.8 million for 2024-25. The target for the next fiscal year is 11 percent more than that of the 2023-24. Source: The Print

Water & Sanitation

Arunachal Pradesh achieves 100 percent saturation in the “Har Ghar Jal” scheme under the central government’s Jal Jeevan Mission (JJM). The state has become the first in the northeast India and the tenth in the country to achieve a 100 percent saturation under the scheme. Source: PTI; In detail: JJM Dashboard

Center – State Relations 

Nothing critical to report this week.

Any Other

Tamil Nadu announces that it will cover all educational expenses of students from the transgender community who wish to pursue higher education. The state has allocated $240,918 to the Tamil Nadu Transgender Welfare Board for this purpose. Source: Deccan Herald

Odisha introduces the “Nutana Unnata Abhilasha” (NUA) Odisha scholarship scheme for students pursuing undergraduate and postgraduate courses in the state. As per the initiative, male students will receive $108.4 per year, while female students will receive $120.4. Additionally, male students from SC/ST and Nirman Shramik (construction worker) families will receive $120.45, while female students in the same categories will receive $132.5 per year. Source: Times of India; In detail: Nutana Unnata Abhilasha (NUA) Odisha scholarship scheme

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Akshat Singh
Research Associate, Chair in U.S.-India Policy Studies