New Delhi:India’s fiscal deficit soared to Rs7.15 trillion at the end of February, exceeding the revised target of Rs5.94 trillion for the entire 2017-18 fiscal.
As per data released by the Controller General of Accounts (CGA), fiscal deficit for April-February was 120% of the revised estimates on account of increased expenditure and subdued revenue receipts.
The monthly account till February-end revealed that the government has collected Rs12.83 trillion revenue, which is 79.09% of revised estimates. Of this, over Rs10.35 trillion is collected from taxes, while over Rs1.42 trillion and Rs1.05 trillion accrued on account of non-tax revenue and non-debt capital receipts, respectively.
Non-debt capital receipts consist of recovery of loans of Rs13,301 crore. Besides, Rs92,493 crore has been mopped up through PSU disinvestment till February-end.
In the revised estimates of 2017-18, the government had raised the disinvestment target to Rs1 trillion, up from Rs72,500 crore in the Budget estimates.
In 11 months till February, over Rs5.29 trillion has been transferred to state governments as devolution of share of taxes by the Centre, which is Rs66,039 crore higher than the corresponding period of last year 2016-17.
Total expenditure incurred by the government during the period was over Rs19.99 trillion, which is 90.14% of revised estimates for 2017-18. Of this, Rs17.02 trillion is on revenue account and Rs2.97 trillion is on capital account.
Of the total revenue expenditure, Rs4.50 trillion is on account of interest payments and Rs2.27 trillion is on account of major subsidies.
In the Budget for 2018-19 presented on 1 February, finance minister Arun Jaitley had revised upwards the fiscal deficit target to 3.5% of the GDP for 2017-18, as against the initial target of 3.2%, on account of GST implementation and deferment of spectrum auction.
The fiscal deficit or gap between total expenditure and revenues has been pegged at 3.3% for 2018-19.