NEW DELHI: After the RBI cleared Rs 28,000 crore as interim dividend to the government, the finance ministry is likely to seek a dividend of Rs 69,000 crore for the next financial year.
“The RBI has already approved Rs 28,000 crore for this financial year. The demand for the next financial year would be Rs 69,000 crore,” a senior official from the finance ministry said.
So far the RBI has paid Rs 40,000 crore as dividend to the government.
It was further confirmed by the Minister of State for Finance, P Radhakrishnan, who told the Rajya Sabha that the government had requested the Reserve Bank of India to provide an interim surplus during the ongoing financial year 2018-19 from the amount withheld in the two previous fiscals.
According to the annual report of the RBI, it had transferred Rs 13,140 crore to its contingency fund in 2016-17, and Rs 14,190 crore in 2017-18.
The matter would be taken up by Finance Minister Piyush Goyal during his address to the RBI board members.
A reason why the government is so badly dependent on the dividend is the shortfall in GST revenue.
Despite various schemes, the shortfall in GST revenue of an estimated Rs 1 lakh crore has forced the government to revise downwards its gross tax revenue target by over Rs 23,066 crore in the revised estimates of the current fiscal despite a better-than-expected direct tax collection.
As per the Interim Budget tabled in Parliament on Friday, the government revised the GST target from Rs 7.44 lakh crore to Rs 6.44 lakh crore, which insiders says is still difficult to achieve. Total indirect taxes, including Customs and other duties, are estimated to be Rs 10.45 lakh crore, down from Rs 11.18 lakh crore. Further, the net borrowing was revised to Rs 4.47 trillion from Rs 4.07 trillion in the revised estimates for FY 2018-19.
The farmer’s scheme, which was introduced with retrospective effect, will add a Rs 20,000 crore burden on the government in this fiscal.