Union Finance Minister Arun Jaitley today said the defence expenditure of the country, excluding pensions to armed forces, in Financial Year 2017-18 will be Rs 2.74 crore. This is a slight increase from what was announced in the last budget. Last year, the government had allocated Rs 2.58 lakh crore on defence. For the forst time in 2016, outlay for defence was not covered by the Finance Minister in his speech to the Lok Sabha. Jaitley continued the practice this year as well. Defence pensions are not included in the Defence budget since mid-1980. In 2015, the allocation for defence was Rs 2,46, 727 crore.
The allocation for last year’s defence budget was increased by 9.76% to Rs 2.58 lakh crore for the 2016-17 as compared to the revised estimates of Rs 2.33 lakh crore for 2015-16 even as military pension zoomed to Rs 82,000 crore mainly due to the One Rank One Pension scheme. The capital outlay for the three services, for modernisation, stood at Rs 78,586.68 crore. The defence budget accounted for nearly 17.2 per cent of the total central government expenditure for the year 2016-17 which is Rs 19.78 lakh crore.
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This included the pension budget along with the defence budget. The highest jump has been in the pension expenses. While the revised estimate for the current fiscal was Rs 60,238 crore, it has jumped to Rs 82,332.66 crore for the coming financial year.