The Union Minister for Finance presented the Union Budget 2019-20 before the Parliament.
The term ‘budget’ has nowhere been used in the Constitution. It is the popular name for the ‘Annual Financial Statement’ that has been dealt with in Article 112 of the Constitution.
The budget is a statement of the estimated receipts and expenditure of the Government of India in a financial year (FY), which begins on April 1 and ends on March 31 of the following year.
In addition to the estimates of receipts and expenditure, the budget contains certain other elements. Overall, the budget contains the following:
Estimates of revenue and capital receipts;
Ways and means to raise revenue;
Estimates of expenditure;
Details of the actual receipts and expenditure of the closing financial year and the reasons for any deficit or surplus in that year; and
Economic and financial policy of the coming year, that is, taxation proposals, prospects of revenue, spending programme and introduction of new schemes/projects.
The Railway Budget was separated from the General Budget in 1921 on the recommendations of the Acworth Committee. In August 2016, the Central Government decided to merge the railway budget into the general budget.
Fiscal deficit in FY 19 has been set at 3.3% of the GDP.
Indian economy will become a 3 trillion dollar economy in 2019. Government aspires to make India a 5 trillion dollar economy by 2024-25. To achieve this, there is a need for investment in:
Job creation in small and medium firms
PAN and Aadhaar will become interchangeable. One can use Aadhaar number to file I-T Returns.
Rs. 5 lakh minimum limit announced for taxpayers.
In view of rising income levels, those in the ₹2-5 crore and ₹5 crore-and-above brackets will see an increase in effective tax rate by 3% (39%) and 7% (42.74%), respectively.
No change in personal income tax rates.
Increase in cess on fuel by 1 rupee, petrol & diesel to get costlier; while customs duty on gold and precious items increased.
Corporate tax with a turnover of up to Rs 400 crore slashed to 25% from a current rate of 30%.
GST Counciladvised to reduce tax rate on Electric Vehicles from 12% to 5%.