Budget: FAQs news
06 July 2009

1.When is the Indian budget presented in Parliament?
By convention, on the last working day of February.

2.Who organises and oversees the budget?
The budget division of the finance ministry, with inputs from other departments.

3.What are the two parts of the budget speech?
Part A, covering the outlays for different economic sectors, and Part B that covers tax proposals.

4.Is it mandatory to table a budget every year?
Yes. Under Article 112 of the Constitution, which stipulates that a statement of estimated receipts and expenditure of the Government of India has to be laid before Parliament in respect of every financial year which runs from 1st April to 31st March. This statement titled ''Annual Financial Statement'' is the main Budget document.

The Annual Financial Statement shows the receipts and payments of Government under the three parts in which Government accounts are kept: (I) Consolidated Fund, (ii) Contingency Fund and (iii) Public Account.

5.What is vote on account?
If for some reason the budget is not tabled, the Parliament can continue into the next financial year with its expenditure approved  through a vote on account till the budget is presented.

6.What are annual plans?
The annual break-up of the five year plans.

7.What is fiscal deficit
The excess of total expenditure over total non-borrowed receipts.

8.What is a cess?
An additional levy on the basic tax liability to meet specific expenditure.

9.What are demands for grants?
The expenditure proposals of each ministry as presented during budget discussions.

10.How is the budget approved?
The finance minister introduces the budget in Parliament, after which a general discussion is held. The demands for grants are discussed, after which all the demands are put to vote. The appropriation bill, after passing demands for grants, becomes the Appropriation Act and is certified as a Money Bill. Similarly, tax proposals are introduced as the Finance Bill which, after passing through amendments, becomes the Finance Act.

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Budget: FAQs