Fiscal deficit hits 93 pc of budget estimate

India's fiscal deficit reached nearly 93 per cent of the budget estimate at Rs 6.52 lakh crore at the end of September in the current financial year, government data showed on Thursday.

In absolute terms, the fiscal deficit or the gap between expenditure and revenue was Rs 6,51,554 crore as on September 30, according to the data released by the Controller General of Accounts (CGA).

The deficit stood at 95.3 per cent of the 2018-19 budget estimate (BE) in the corresponding month a year ago.

The government has pegged the fiscal deficit for the current financial year at Rs 7.03 lakh crore, aiming to restrict the deficit at 3.3 per cent of the gross domestic product (GDP).

Notably, the government has let go of revenues to the tune of Rs 1.45 lakh crore by announcing cuts in corporate tax in September with a view to boosting the faltering economy.

The CGA data showed that revenue receipts of the government during the April-September 2019-20 period rose to 41.6 per cent of the BE compared to 40.1 per cent in the corresponding period last year.

In absolute terms, revenue receipts stood at Rs 8,16,467 crore at the end of September. For the entire 2019-20, the revenue receipts have been pegged at Rs 19.62 lakh crore.

The capital expenditure was 55.5 per cent of the BE as compared to 54.2 per cent in the year-ago period, the CGA data showed.

Total expenditure during April-September stood at Rs 14.88 lakh crore or 53.4 per cent of the BE, same as the corresponding period of the previous financial year.

The government has pegged its total expenditure for the financial year 2019-20 at Rs 27.86 lakh crore.

The fiscal deficit figure in monthly accounts during a financial year is not necessarily an indicator of fiscal deficit for the year, as per the CGA.

Its data gets impacted by temporal mismatch between flow of non-debt receipts and expenditure up to that month on account of various transitional factors both on receipt and expenditure side, which may get substantially offset by the end of the financial year. 

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