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 Lok Sabha passes Finance Bill |

 Lok Sabha passes Finance Bill

Context: 

∙ The Lok Sabha passed the Finance Bill, 2024  by voice vote recently.  

About:

∙ The House also approved the Appropriation Bill authorising the government to meet expenses for four months in the next financial year.

∙ An Appropriation Bill is a crucial piece of legislation, which authorizes the government to spend public money approved in the annual budget. 

∙ It helps to ensure accountability and transparency by requiring parliamentary approval for spending and prevents unauthorized withdrawals from the Consolidated fund of India.

∙ The lower house also approved the Rs 1.8 lakh crore budget of the Union Territory of Jammu and Kashmir.

Finance Bill

∙ A Finance Bill is a Money Bill as defined in Article 110 of the Constitution. 

Do you know?– While all Money Bills are Financial Bills, all Financial Bills are not Money Bills.  a. For example, the Finance Bill which only contains provisions related to tax proposals would be a Money Bill. – However, a Bill that contains some provisions related to taxation or expenditure, but also covers other matters would be considered as a Financial Bill.a. Therefore, if a Bill merely involves expenditure by the government, and addresses other issues, it will be a financial bill.

∙ It is introduced annually in the Lok Sabha (lower house of parliament) after the Union Budget presentation.

∙ It embodies the government’s budgetary proposals for taxation, spending, and other financial matters.

∙ The proposals of the government for levy of new taxes, modification of the existing tax structure or continuance of the existing tax structure beyond the period approved by Parliament are submitted to Parliament through this bill. 

∙ The Finance Bill is accompanied by a Memorandum containing explanations of the provisions included in it. 

∙ The Finance Bill can be introduced only in Lok Sabha. 

∙ However, the Rajya Sabha can recommend amendments in the Bill. 

∙ It requires approval from both houses of parliament before becoming law.

∙ The bill has to be passed by the Parliament within 75 days of its introduction.

Key Features of the 2024 Finance Bill

∙ No change in Income Tax: Due to the upcoming general elections in April-May 2024, the bill focuses on maintaining the existing tax structure for the financial year 2024-2025.

∙ Focus on certain reliefs: Some minor tax reliefs are included for specific sectors or categories of taxpayers.

∙ Measures to boost economic growth: Include provisions for infrastructure development, investment promotion, and ease of doing business reforms.∙ Fiscal consolidation: The government aims to reduce the fiscal deficit by proposing measures to control spending or increase revenue.

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