As government seeks to roll out the food law, Finance Minister P Chidambaram today sought to raise total subsidies on fuel, food and fertilisers marginally to over Rs 2.46 lakh crore in the 2014-15 fiscal.
Government has increased the food subsidy by a whopping Rs 23,000 crore to Rs 1,15,000 crore for 2014-15 fiscal mainly for implementation of the National Food Security law.
According to the interim Budget proposals, subsidy bill on food, petroleum and fertilisers is estimated at Rs 2,46,397 crore for 2014-15 fiscal against Rs 2,45,452 crore in the revised estimates for this fiscal.
Interestingly, the revised estimates for this fiscal are higher by 11 per cent compared to the budget estimate of Rs 2,20,971.50 crore.
"Non-plan expenditure in 2014-15 is estimated at Rs 12,07,892 crore. Of this, the expenditure on subsidies for food, fertiliser and fuel will be Rs 2,46,397 crore. This is slightly more than the revised estimate of Rs 2,45,452 crore in 2013-14.," Chidambaram said while unveiling the Interim Budget 2014-15 proposals in the Lok Sabha.
As much as Rs 65,000 crore has been allocated for fuel subsidy, he added.
"We have this year (2013-14) absorbed the rollover of Rs 45,000 crore from the fourth quarter of 2012-13 (fiscal) and we will rollover only Rs 35,000 crore from the fourth quarter of this year into the next year," the Minister said.
On Food Security Act, Chidambaram said: "Rs 1,15,000 crore has been allocated for food subsidy keeping in mind the government's firm and irrevocable commitment to implement the National Food Security Act throughout the country."