Finance Minister Arun Jaitley says the Centre will have to make a provision for about Rs 1.10 lakh crore to implement the pay commission recommendations and the One Rank, One Pension (Orop) decision on former military personnel. He also said here on Friday that the government was still deliberating on the fiscal consolidation road map. And, that more incentives would be given to the farm sector.
Members of Parliament’s consultative committee attached to his ministry asked him to raise the tax exemption limit for the middle and salaried class to Rs 4 lakh a year, from the existing Rs 2.5 lakh. And, to widen the tax base and punish evaders.
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The defence pension budget was likely to be around Rs 65,000 crore for 2016-17, up 20 per cent from the 2015-16 Budget estimate of Rs 54,000 crore, the defence ministry had said on Wednesday. It had said the annual recurring financial implication from Orop implementation would be Rs 7,500 crore at current rates. Payment arrears from July 1, 2014 (from when it is to take effect) to December 31, 2015 would be Rs 10,900 crore.
This year we have spent more but will very well manage our deficit targets,” the ministry quoted him as telling the MPs.
The government’s current schedule calls for keeping the deficit at no more than 3.9 per cent of gross domestic product this financial year and to 3.5 per cent in 2016-17. Jaitley will present Budget for the coming year on February 29. The minister said the highest ever amount was given to states for drought relief this year. And, that more incentives would be given to the agricultural sector for raising production and productivity.
Panel members suggested the threshold for PAN card requirement in a transaction be raised to Rs 5 lakh from the current Rs 2 lakh. And, the service tax exemption limit be raised from Rs 10 lakh to Rs 25 lakh, beside exempting skill development-related institutions from this levy.