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Week in review

Week in review
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First Published: Fri, Jul 10 2009. 11 45 PM IST
Updated: Fri, Jul 10 2009. 11 45 PM IST
New Delhi: The week began with finance minister Pranab Mukherjee unveiling a Union budget meant to spur growth. Mukherjee announced massive spending hikes for rural India and for infrastructure. He also promised to create more than a crore of jobs every year.
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But the higher spending could be costly. The budget projected India’s fiscal deficit would rise to 6.8% for the year ending 31 March 2010. This is much higher than the 6.2% deficit last year and the 2.7% for the fiscal 2007-2008.
Industry reactions to the budget were mixed. Industry leaders welcomed the abolishing of the fringe benefit tax (FBT) and the commodities transaction tax, but said they expected more.
The state-run power company NTPC is trying to shield itself from the gas dispute between RIL and RNRL. The power ministry wants the government to redistribute cheap gas meant for its plants in the Delhi area to its plants in Gujarat.
The government is going to appoint members of industry as directors of Air India. Last month, the troubled national carrier had asked the government for a bailout after it ran out of cash and asked its employees to delay receiving their salaries.
The monsoons picked up across most of India over the last week. Rainfall was just 8% below normal in early July, an improvement over the end of June when rain was 29% below normal.
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First Published: Fri, Jul 10 2009. 11 45 PM IST