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Pranab Mukherjee to present Union Budget today

New Delhi, Fri, 16 Mar 2012 ANI

New Delhi, Mar 16 (ANI): Finance Minister Pranab Mukherjee will present the Union Budget for the fiscal year 2012-2013 in Parliament on Friday.

 

Mukherjee, who has left for Parliament, will be presenting his seventh budget today.

 

Today's budget, which will be the UPA's ninth successive budget, comes against the backdrop of slowing growth and growing fiscal deficit.

 

It will be interesting note whether Mukherjee will change the income tax slabs and change the saving exemption limit, as the indirect taxes appear to be pinching the common man of the country.

 

Mukherjee, who met senior officials of the Finance Ministry to give final touches to the annual budget earlier on Thursday, is expected to push for reforms.

 

The government is, however, at the moment faced with a tight rope walk, as the presentation of the annual budget comes just days after the mounting pressure from its allies.

 

The Chief Economic Adviser to Finance Ministry, Kaushik Basu, had earlier on Thursday forecast a 7.6 percent growth rate for the 2012-13 fiscal year, and said growth will revive slowly due to a drop in investment and savings rates.

 

Speaking on the figures mentioned in the annual Economic Survey of India, Basu said: "During the next year, that is 2012-13, India's growth rate will be 7.6 percent, plus or minus 0.25. This is a revival, but a slow revival. This year, the expected growth, and we don't dispute the figure that the government has put out officially, which is 6.9 percent, we expect roughly that."

 

"So, going back into 7.6 is a revival, but still nowhere near where India was," he added.

 

Basu said that the revival was slow owing to a drop in investment and savings rate, which was expected to decline further in the coming fiscal. (ANI)

 


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