Modi administration is so confident about its re-election chances that it’s reportedly releasing a full budget for the next financial year



  • As the campaigning for various upcoming state elections heats up, the BJP is all set to present a full budget for the next financial year.
  • In an election year, the ruling administration usually releases a temporary budget, which is referred to as a “vote on account,” as it isn’t certain of whether it will be elected again.
  • In formulating a full budget for 2019-2020 ahead of general elections in May, the Modi administration is signalling its confidence in its ability to get re-elected.
As the campaigning for various upcoming state elections heats up, the BJP is all set to present a full budget for the next financial year, a senior government official told Mint. In doing so, the current party in power is doing away with tradition.

In an election year, the ruling administration usually releases a temporary budget, which is referred to as a “vote on account”. This is usually a stop-gap measure as the party in power isn’t certain of whether it will be elected again.

Hence, there’s no point to undertaking the exhaustive exercise of drawing up a budget and allocating expenditure to each sector if the new administration is going to come and completely rework it. For example, in early 2014, the then Finance Minister P. Chidambaram presented a vote-on-account budget, which was followed by a full, revised budget presented by his successor Arun Jaitley in July 2014 after the BJP took power.

Last month, the government’s finance ministry commenced the process of finalising the budgets for different sectors and ministries for 2019-2020. In addition, all government ministries have been given a deadline of 30 November to submit their inputs for the budget speech to be presented by Jaitley in February 2019.

In formulating a full budget for 2019-2020 ahead of general elections in May, the Modi administration is signalling its confidence in its ability to get re-elected. While this could be a interpreted as a chest-thumping measure meant to intimidate rivals, it could also prove to be an important component of the government’s re-election mandate and can help sway voters.

The budget, which will be presented on 1 February, is a showcase of the government’s spending priorities and will mark the culmination of its five years in power. The supposed motivation behind the move is to ensure the smooth working of the economy and the continuity of certain policies in the interim period as power changes hands.

Furthermore, the government will also reportedly present the Economic Survey for 2018-19, a practice usually reserved for the succeeding administration in an election year.


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