Budget focuses to create a trust-based environment: Finance Secretary Rajiv Kumar

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New Delhi: Mr Rajiv Kumar, Finance Secretary, Ministry of Finance, Government of India, today said that the budget making process was based on promoting a trust-based environment and that the government did not go overboard in making any projections.

Speaking at the ‘FICCI National Executive Committee Meeting’, Mr Kumar said, “The entire strategy is to base the budget making process and the environment a trust-based environment. We have not gone overboard in projecting anything. We have not breached the FRBM Act as 0.5% point deviation in fiscal deficit is as per law.”

Mr Kumar said that the direct tax dispute resolution scheme has been designed to end up litigation with government and that directions have been issued to banks to differentiate between genuine business failure and fraud.

“We do not want an environment in the country where one after another you have failures somewhere or the other disturbing the entire system. So, the Banking Regulation Act is being amended to bring the rigour in whosoever takes the deposit and deal with the public money,” he said.

Mr Atanu Chakraborty, Secretary, Department of Economic Affairs, said that the budget has not considered the adjusted gross revenue (AGR) of telecom companies while making the budget calculations.

Responding to a query on the budget announcements that will act as a stimulus to kickstart the economy, Mr Chakraborty said, “There has been an unprecedented Rs 76,000 crore increase of the capex in the budget itself. On the demand side, there is a big stimulus on the direct tax side.”

He also cited package of 16 points linking farm to the market and also export of one commodity per district aimed at doubling of farmers income and substantial outlay for National Infrastructure Pipeline, along with the infrastructure finance companies, which have been put in place.

“If today you see the bond market the yields are already down, cost of capital is coming down and when the cost of capital comes down the monetary transmission is far more efficient,” he added.

Dr Krishnamurthy Subramanian, Chief Economic Adviser, Ministry of Finance, said, “The economic survey provided the intellectual foundations for the hand of trust to support the invisible hand of markets. So, it is important to recognise that ethical wealth creation has always brought results, and, in this context, the government has made the first move”.

Mr YK Modi, Past President, FICCI, chaired the panel discussion with the senior officials of the Ministry of Finance, which was also attended by Dr John Joseph, Chairman, Central Board of Indirect Taxes and Customs and Member (Tax Policy), Central Board of Indirect Taxes and Customs, Ministry of Finance, and Mr Rajesh Kumar Bhoot, JS (TPL)-II, CBDT, Ministry of Finance.

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