The Indian Economy Blog

August 26, 2005

Matching Outcome To Intention

Filed under: Fiscal policy — Amit Varma @ 4:22 am

The Indian Express reports:

If all goes according to plan, in May 2006, citizens will have the first quantifiable indication on just how the government is spending the money it collects in taxes.

In a first, Finance Minister P Chidambaram today tabled an “Outcome Budget” in Parliament that seeks to pinpoint scheme-wise targets, quarter-to-quarter, on each and every planned expenditure by Central ministries and departments in a financial year.

The annual document lists clearly-defined deliverables for each scheme/programme, its budgetary outlay, processes and timelines, as well as risk factors in meeting the target. Next May, when the second Outcome Budget will be tabled, there should be clear answers to which targets have been met – and those that have not.

This is a fantastic initiative, as this will empower us with the information about what precisely is being done with the money we pay in taxes. In a sense, it’s the right to information act applied to the application of the union budget. This information will probably be released in jargonese, but there are enough people around to demystify it for everyone. Great move.

4 Comments »

  1. I am just worried about that ” If all goes according to the plan” :-) Nevertheless its a good start.

    Comment by cogito — August 26, 2005 @ 6:56 am

  2. A step in the right direction.Wonder if this would really be an annual affair. Any measure of transparency, even if infrequent, is welcome.

    I agree with the comment on Jargon. We Indians need to learn the sublime art of simplification.

    Comment by swami — August 26, 2005 @ 8:45 pm

  3. This isn’t related to this post, and I would have sent it by e-mail if the option were available, but thanks for the site. It’s great stuff and has become a daily read.

    Comment by myrick — August 27, 2005 @ 10:18 am

  4. Wenger admits concern at Arsenal’s stuttering start
    Arsene Wenger admitted Arsenal must improve quickly if they bank interest rates to mount a Premiership title challenge after watching his side held to a 1-1 bank interest rates by 10-man Middlesbrough.

    Comment by bank interest rates — September 10, 2006 @ 7:56 am

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