ISSN (Print) - 0012-9976 | ISSN (Online) - 2349-8846

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Getting the Numbers Right

ECONOMIC AND POLITICAL WEEKLY Getting the Numbers Right Framing the budget for a country with a billion people and as large and diverse as India has always been a daunting task for the union finance minister. It must be even more formidable in a government made up of and propped by parties with divergent ideologies and interests, even though the differences are supposed to be sunk under a common minimum programme (CMP). A globalising economy also has its constraints for the play of tax and borrowing policies especially with international monetary institutions and foreign rating agencies looking over the shoulder to see that the orthodox rules of prudent fiscal behaviour are not infringed. For all his familiarity with the intricacies of budget making it may not be so simple for P Chidambaram this time to produce a document of revenue and expenditure estimates of his government that can meet everyone

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