New Delhi, Sept. 30: Fiscal deficit in the first five months of the current fiscal has already touched 74.6 per cent of the budget estimate compared with 65.7 per cent a year ago despite finance minister P. Chidambaram reiterating several times that the red line should not be breached.
While net tax receipts for the first five months of the fiscal stood at Rs 1.8 lakh crore, total expenditure was Rs 6.62 lakh crore. Revenue collection slowed to 20.8 per cent of the budget estimate (Rs 8.84 lakh crore) against 22.7 per cent in the previous fiscal. Indirect and direct tax collection stood at Rs 1.83 lakh crore at the end of August.
Revenue deficit during the five-month period went up to Rs 3.31 lakh crore, or 87.4 per cent of the budget estimate, compared with 79.2 per cent last year.
The fiscal deficit, which is the difference between government receipts and spending, touched Rs 4.04 lakh crore in April-August.