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

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Decoding the Three Pandemic Budgets

Despite substantial socio-economic disparities in health, education, and nutrition outcomes, the government is pitching human development expenditure against capital expenditure. In a welfare state, social sector should be the centre of policy prescriptions. Instead of an imperfect assumption of trickle-down, the the government needs to realise that growth and development must go hand in hand.

Union Budget 2022–23

The Union Budget 2022–23 proposes a step forward towards the implementation of the National Education Policy 2020 by invoking the increased use of information and communications technology as a policy instrument to repurpose education towards skill formation and to globalise Indian higher education.

What Must be the Priority of the Budget?

Improving agriculture incomes and boosting consumer demand must be the top priorities.

India’s Government Health Expenditure as the Ratio to GDP

The appropriateness of the criterion that pegs the ratio of public health expenditure to the gross domestic product—which is volatile—needs a re-examination. The targets for allocation and expenditure of financial resources for health need to be based on indicators that can be monitored.

Fifteenth Finance Commission Recommendations

While trying to balance the competing demands from the union and the states, the Fifteenth Finance Commission has done a commendable job, but has also sacrificed objectivity at times.

Experiences with Government-sponsored Health Insurance Schemes in Indian States

The implications of expanding government-sponsored health insurance schemes in India are analysed from a fiscal perspective. The experiences of two of the earliest and largest GSHI schemes of the country implemented in Andhra Pradesh and Tamil Nadu are examined. The results suggest that the expansion of the GSHI schemes may skew expenditure away from primary and secondary care towards tertiary care if the fiscal space is limited. A competitive public health system may help in containing costs and the corresponding fiscal burden. The effectiveness of public spending through such schemes is ambiguous.

Utilisation of Government Borrowings in Major Indian States

Fiscal sustainability is a key element for subnational governments in India as fiscal policy is the only instrument that can be used to correct economic malady. As far as state government finances are concerned, subnational financial stability can be understood as the capacity to generate adequate resources to afford their expenses on a sustained basis. An analysis of subnational fiscal sustainability, through a study of utilisation patterns of total debt receipts of state governments, is undertaken for 17 major Indian states during 1980–81 to 2014–15. The results indicate wide fluctuations among the states. While Kerala, Punjab, and West Bengal have shown poor and unproductive utilisation of debt receipts, Punjab has witnessed maximum instability.

Political Economy of Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation Budgets

The paper focuses on the changing trends in budget allocations of the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation, especially since the structural adjustment programme that came to be implemented from 1990 and how it has affected civic services, especially health and education. The paper concludes that it has increasingly directed public resources to the private sector and reduced access adversely access to both healthcare and school education for Mumbaikars.

How to Make Budgets with a Dearth of Data

Given that the reliability of official data has come into question, there is no way to understand the full extent of the issues that various sectors are facing without accurate data.

Priorities of Uttar Pradesh Budget: As Infrastructure Expenditure Rises, Health and Education Face Neglect

Successive state governments in Uttar Pradesh have tended to neglect the social sector and this is reflected in the budgetary allocation to the sector. In the 2018 –2019 budget, t he increase in budgetary allocation for sectors like power, transport, and irrigation has been much higher than that for health or education.

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