Throwing some clarity on when the Budget 2017 will be presented, Cabinet Committee on Parliamentary Affairs on Tuesday recommended advancing the holding of the Budget Session from January 31 followed by the presentation of the Union Budget on February 1. Also, Both the address of the President and tabling of the Economic Survey will take place on January 31. So, what exactly is Economic Survey? All those who don’t know what it is, here is the answer:
The Finance Ministry of India presents the Economic Survey in the parliament every year, just before the Union Budget. It is the ministry’s view on the annual economic development of the country. A flagship annual document of the Ministry of Finance, Government of India, Economic Survey reviews the developments in the Indian economy over the previous 12 months, summarizes the performance on major development programs, and highlights the policy initiatives of the government and the prospects of the economy in the short to medium term. This document is presented to both houses of Parliament during the Budget Session.
Meanwhile, early presentation of the Budget would mean that the entire exercise is over by March 31 and expenditure as well as tax proposals will come into effect right from the beginning of the new fiscal, thereby ensuring better implementation. As per the earlier practice, the budgetary exercise was completed only by mid-May and with the monsoon arriving in June, most of the schemes and spendings by states did not take off until October, leaving just half-a-year for their implementation.
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In September last year, ending a nearly a century-long practice, the Cabinet had decided to scrap a separate budget for the railways and merge it with the General Budget, presentation of which was decided to be advanced to spur spending and boost the economy. Earlier, the Budget approval process usually happened in two parts extending to the second or third week of May, hampering early implementation of schemes and spending programmes.
(With inputs from PTI)