The Finance Ministry has started preparations for Budget 2014-15 by asking different central ministries and departments to come out with their estimates of receipts as well as expenditure for the next financial year.
The Budget Circular 2014-2015 issued by the Finance Ministry contains guidelines for framing the Budget Estimates for 2014-2015 as well as the Revised Estimates for 2013-2014.
With general elections scheduled to be held in May next year, there will only be an interim Budget. The final Budget will presented by the new government.
Traditionally, the Union Budget is presented by the Finance Minister in the last week of February. The Budget 2013-14 was presented by Finance Minister P Chidambaram on February 28.
As per the circular, estimates of central taxes and duties administered by the Central Board of Direct Taxes (CBDT) and Central Board of Excise and Customs ( CBEC) will be furnished by them to the Budget Division giving commodity-wise estimates of imports, manufacture, duty rates and foreign exchange rate assumptions.
The estimates of expenditure to be furnished in stages will be finalised after discussions with the financial advisers in October and November.
As part of the Budget preparations, the Finance Ministry also holds discussion with different stakeholders including industry and trade unions, among others.
The next Budget will be presented in the backdrop of the recent austerity measures put in place by the government on non-plan expenditure.
In the steps announced early this month, the government had put restrictions on new job creations, holding seminars in five star hotels as well as asking its officials to travel in economy class only, among others.
Chidambaram had presented his eighth annual budget in Parliament on February 28, 2013, the second highest by anyone in India after a record 10 by Morarji Desai.
Desai was also the Prime Minister during 1977-79. Budget 2013-14 was the 82nd Union Budget in the Indian history, including interim and special-situation budgetary proposals. Independent India's first budget was presented by the then Finance Minister R K Shanmukham Chetty on November 26, 1947.