Budget 2019 India: The Modi government had borrowed Rs 1.52 lakh crore in April 2018, which was nearly one fourth of its annual target for the previous fiscal.
Union Budget 2019: The Union government has exhausted more than a fifth of its annual borrowing target in the first month of the current fiscal year itself. The Interim Budget 2019 presented by then finance minister Piyush Goyal in February had put total government borrowings for 2019-20 at Rs 7.03 lakh crore, an all-time high. Its borrowings at the end of April stood at Rs 1.57 lakh crore.
It is not unusual for the government to borrow heavily in April. Official data reveal that the government had borrowed almost a quarter (24.3%) of its budget target for the last fiscal in the first month. Former Finance Minister Arun Jaitley had estimated that the government’s total borrowings in FY 2018-19 to be Rs 6.24 lakh crore when he presented the budget in February last year.
However, as per the latest official data released a few days ago, the government overshot the target set by Arun Jaitley by over Rs 21,000 crore as its total borrowings crossed Rs 6.45 lakh crore in FY 2018-19. But it is not unusual for the government to borrow a big part, almost up to a quarter of its total loan requirement for the year in the first month of new financial year itself.
These huge sums are required at the start of financial year for rolling out government schemes and social welfare programmes. The government has spent a total of over Rs 2.54 lakh crore in April this year. Of the total amount, Rs 1.57 lakh crore or little more than 61% was arranged through borrowings and loans. And remaining amount of Rs 95,000 crore was arranged by the government through tax and non-tax revenues, Rs 71,637 crore and Rs 23,293 crore respectively.
And it also arranged Rs 5402 crore through other options like non-debt capital receipts (Rs 2701 crore), recovery of loans (Rs 350 crore) and other receipts (Rs 2351 crore), taking the total figure to Rs 98,000 crore. In terms of percentage, the government’s total borrowings in the first month of this fiscal accounts for 22.3% of its annual borrowing target, but it is still less than the borrowing limit exhausted by the government in previous two years.
The government had borrowed Rs 1.52 lakh crore in April 2018, which was nearly one fourth of its annual target for the previous fiscal.
In fact, the union government had exhausted nearly 40% of its total annual borrowing target in the first month of FY 2017-18. It had borrowed Rs 2.05 lakh crore in April 2017 which was 37.6% of its total borrowing target of Rs 5.46 lakh crore for the fiscal.