India’s fiscal deficit widened to Rs.12.3 lakh crore in January, representing 66.8% of the target as per the revised estimates (RE) for FY21, according to data from the Controller General of Accounts, released on Friday.

The figure showed a sharp improvement from 132% of the earlier deficit target in December, as finance minister Nirmala Sitharaman more than doubled the target to Rs 18.5 lakh crore or 9.5% of gross domestic product from Rs.7.96 lakh crore.

GTR for April – January almost back to last year’s levels at Rs. 15.15 lakh crore, showing a deficit of just 1% over last year’s levels for the same period on the back of sharp improvements in excise duties.

Total expenditure grew 11% year-on-year to Rs. 25.2 lakh crore till January, but represented 73% of the revised expenditure target of Rs. 34.45 lakh crore, against 84% in January 2020. Now the expenditure grew 8% annually at Rs. 21.5 lakh crore till January, capital expenditure showed a sharp 35% annual expansion to Rs. 3.62 lakh crore.

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