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More steps to rationalise subsidies on anvil: Jaitley

Jaitley addresses media

New Delhi, Dec 6 (PTI) Assuring India Inc of NDA’s commitment to carry forward economic reforms, Finance Minister Arun Jaitley today said the government will come out with more steps to rationalise subsidies.

“I had a series of meeting with the Expenditure Management Commission. They are effectively¬† working on some very valuable suggestions with regard to rationalisation of subsidies…

“In the next few, even months…may be earlier than that they will be able to come out with some interim recommendations to us so that we can proceed with rationalisation in that direction”, Jaitley said.

Recalling the government’s decision to link the diesel prices with market price, the Minister told the India Economic Conclave said that it would help in reducing the subsidy burden of the government.

Besides, the government has recently decided to give direct cash subsidy on pilot basis to LPG customers in select cities.

The Centre had set up a Commission under former RBI Governor Bimal Jalan to suggest steps to rationalise subsidy and help the government in effectively bringing down the fiscal deficit.

The government currently provides various kinds of subsidies which run into lakhs of crores of rupees. It was pegged at Rs 2.51 lakh crore for 2014-15.

Speaking at the Conclave organised by television channel ET Now, Jaitley expressed confidence that the government would be able to push the Insurance and the GST bills in the current session of Parliament.

On the government’s views on a joint session of Parliament to push the bills as it does not have a majority in the Rajya Sabha, he said: “We don’t want to use the last resort of a joint session for legislations. But if it becomes inevitable that’s a constitutional remedy.”

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