On the sixteenth sitting of Parliament, Lok Sabha concluded its general discussion on the Union Budget 2015-2016 after the Minister of Finance replied to the debate. The Minister reemphasized on 7.4% growth this year and above 8% next year. He stressed on reduction in fiscal deficit which is targeted at 3.9% for the next year, followed by 3.6% the year after and finally 3%. The Minister highlighted that there is a need for domestic and international investment for any economic activity and placed special focus on improving the ease of doing business.
Alongside the Appropriation (vote on account) Bill was passed in the lower house. This bill permits the government expenditure until the final budget is passed.
The lower house also passed the Andhra Pradesh Reorganisation (Amendment) Bill, 2015. The Bill increases the number of members in the Legislative Council of Andhra Pradesh from 50 to 58 members.
The Constitution (Scheduled Castes) Orders (Amendment) Bill, 2015 was also taken up for discussion in Lok Sabha. The Bill adds new communities to the list of Scheduled Castes in Haryana, Karnataka, Odisha, and Dadra and Nagar Haveli. The Bill was passed by Rajya Sabha on February 24, 2015.
In Rajya Sabha discussion on the Railway Budget concluded after the Minister of Railways replied to the debate. The Minister highlighted that an action plan has been prepared to take care of investments, management, transparency and accounting reforms in the Indian Railways. A detailed analysisof the Railways Budget can be read here.