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

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Offering Credible Commitments

Fiscal Responsibility and Budget Management Bill

India's fiscal scenario at the moment is about as bad as it was in 1991-92, the beginning of the economic reforms process. For a variety of reasons, many of them in the realm of political economy, the government has been unable to reduce its expenditures and increase revenues. A fiscal responsibility bill, of the kind being discussed currently, is meant to offer a credible commitment that the government is serious about fiscal consolidation. By tying its own hands the government signals that it is serious about reducing deficits. While one may disagree with the details of the bill, the broad overall thrust and the philosophy underlying it deserve to be welcomed. Unfortunately, as this note is being written, the government is seen to be completely diluting the provisions of the bill so as to render it completely ineffective.

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