Finance Minister Piyush Goyal will present the Union Budget 2019 in Parliament today. The Budget 2019 session comes months before the Lok Sabha elections. Watch the Budget 2019 unfold live here on Aaj Tak.
The Union Budget 2019 is the last Budget before India goes into election mode. Middle class is expecting changes to the existing income tax slabs. For the start-ups and the corporate industry, the government could slash angel tax and corporate tax.
FM Goyal is also expected to announce SOPs for the farmers in his Budget 2019 speech as agrarian distress coupled with a unemployment in the country could force the government to announce voter-appeasing populist measures. As expected, the Modi-led BJP could provide cash benefits to the farmers, and the good news could be announced on the Budget day. This, however, is set to put added burden of Rs 70,000 crore on the exchequer and will have to risk the fiscal target. Fresh Budget will be presented again after Lok Sabha elections. However, Arun Jaitley said that the Budget 2019 will be in the larger interests of the country.
Also, since the Rail Budget is no longer presented separately, Interim Finance Minister Piyush Goyal would read out the budget outlay for Railways when he presents the Union Budget 2019.
So, will Prime Minister Narendra Modi tread a populist path by risking fiscal target or will he play wise? It will become clear soon.
When and where to watch
One can watch the Budget 2019 live updates on Aaj Tak from 11: 00 AM