Budget 2019 India: Interim budget Expectations.
With Union Cabinet Minister Arun Jaitley in the US for medical reasons, Union Finance Minister and Railway Minister Piyush Goyal has been entrusted with the duty to present India Budget 2019 on February 1. Given the fact that the Union Budget will be presented a few months ahead of the Lok Sabha Elections 2019, debate escalates over the nature of the Budget – whether it will be an interim budget or vote-on-account. Recently, Arun Jaitley in a conversation with News18 made it clear that larger interests of the economy will dictate the tone of Budget 2019.
One of the key components the country’s politics ahead of the Lok Sabha 2019 will surely revolve around the promises made by the Central government in the impending Budget. However, to get a sense of what generally goes into the Union Budget in an election year, we take a look at the recent budgets presented in the past two decades.
Former Finance Minister Yashwant Sinha presented perhaps the most talked about the interim budget in 1991. He was presenting the interim budget on behalf of Chandra Shekhar government. Even though the government collapsed a few days after the interim budget, Sinha made landmark announcements regarding India’s first policy on disinvestment. In the interim Budget, the central government said it would disinvest up to 20 per cent of its equity in a few state-owned firms with an aim to raise Rs 2,500 crore in 1991-92. The announcement was carried forward by former Finance Minister Manmohan Singh.
Former Finance Minister Jaswant Singh had the opportunity to present the late Prime Minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee-led NDA government’s interim Budget. In the interim Budget presented on February 3, 2004, the then FM Jaswant Sinha announced a few changes. These changes included the merging of dearness allowance (DA) with basic pay as well as alteration in the stamp duty structure. However, he did not announce any change in the Income Tax structure.
Former Finance Minister Pranab Mukherjee presented the interim Budget in 2008-09 at the fag end of the United Progressive Alliance (UPA)-I. In that interim Budget, Mukherjee eased the fiscal targets. However, later it was revised to 6 per cent. Former Finance Minister P Chidambaram in the Budget speech on February 17, 2014 said there was something in common between the Union Budget and interim Budget. Back then Chidambaram said that circumstances demanded immediate interventions and the central government cannot wait for the regular Budget.
Chidambaram announced a few key things – changes in indirect tax, tax relief for mobile handsets and reducing of excise duty on for small cars, motorcycles, scooters and SUVs.
Source : Financial Express