The fiscal deficit at the end of January 2019 touched 121.5 percent of the revised target of Rs 6.34 lakh crore for the financial year 2018-19 due to lower revenue collection. Official data released on Tuesday showed that the fiscal deficit stood at Rs 7.70 lakh crore for the period between April 2018 and January 2019. It is computed to ascertain the gap between the government's expenditure and revenue.
A year ago, that is at the end of January 2018, the fiscal deficit for the financial year 2017-18 was at 113.7 percent of the revised estimate.
The central government had reduced the budgeted fiscal deficit to 3.3 percent of the GDP (gross domestic product) or Rs 6.24 lakh for 2018-19 when compared to 3.53 percent in the previous year. It was revised upwards to 3.4 percent of the GDP or over Rs 6.34 lakh crore at the Interim Budget 2019-20 presented on 1 February on account of the additional requirement of Rs 20,000 crore to fund the PM Kisan Samman Nidhi scheme.
Data released by the Controller General of Accounts (CGA) showed that the revenue receipts of the government came up to Rs 11.81 lakh crore or 68.3 percent of the revised estimate till January as against 72.8 percent received during the period of the previous year.
Revenue from tax stood at 68.7 percent of the revised estimate, less than 76.5 percent between April to January 2018.
The data further showed that the total government expenditure till January 2019 was Rs 20.01 lakh crore or 81.5 percent of the revised estimate. As for the current fiscal year, the total expenditure has been raised to Rs 24.57 lakh crore in the revised estimate when compared to Rs 24.42 lakh crore that was initially budgeted.