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

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More of the Same

IF the budgetary and fiscal operations of the government in the post-reform period have established anything, it is that they have almost reached a dead-end. At the time of every budget, the finance minister and the senior bureaucrats of the finance ministry are the stars of a media blitz providing entertainment to the middle classes and promising the millennium to the masses. But it is a delectable dance with the hands and legs tied so limited are the government' s budgetary options becoming, given the four or five heads of committed expenditure (interest payments, defence, internal security and civilian salaries and pensions). The bonds have been further tightened by the theological commitment to fiscal compression and by so-called tax reform which has been by and large another name for lowering taxes on the rich.

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