The government on Friday asked the Comptroller and Auditor General to suggest ways to curb its rising subsidy bill on food, fertiliser and petroleum products without hurting the targetted population.
“Subsidies on fertiliser, petroleum and food, both explicit and implicit, impose high burden on public finance and reduces the public money available for developmental work... I would like you (CAG) to focus on how expenditure on subsidies can be contained without adversely impacting targetted beneficiaries,” Finance Minister Pranab Mukherjee said while addressing the 25th conference of the accountants general.
The subsidy bill crossed Rs 1-lakh crore mark in 2008-09 and was estimated at Rs 1.31 lakh crore in the previous fiscal. The government intends to bring down the subsidies to Rs 1.16 lakh crore during 2010-11.