Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman said on Wednesday that every figure quoted in the Union Budget was authentic, The Indian Express reported. Replying to a debate on the Budget in the Lok Sabha, Sitharaman said the difference in the growth rate projected in the Economic Survey compared to the Budget arose because a lower Gross Domestic Product base was taken for calculation in the Interim Budget presented in February.
The Economic Survey had pegged the nominal GDP growth for 2019-’20 at 12%, while the Budget said it was 11%. “As compared to the Economic Survey, the one projected in the Budget is on a lower GDP base because the Interim Budget also used the same lower GDP base which ensures comparability between the Interim and regular,” Sitharaman said.
Sitharaman also said the government was committed to the path of fiscal consolidation without compromising on public expenditure. She added that the tax receipts of the Centre have increased, ANI reported. The finance minister said the amount spent on central government schemes was higher two years after the Goods and Services Tax was introduced.
Sitharaman said there should be no anxiety over the fiscal deficit target of 3.3% of GDP. She said the government was committed to “Sabka Saath, Sabka Vikas” and to ensure national security.
“Increased investment in the social sector will be ensured through prudent rationalisation of expenditure and mobilisation of additional resources,” Sitharaman added.