It is therefore, the honourable finance minister must offer sizeable support to the urban middle-class population in terms of higher limits of exemption on home loans in the Budget 2018-19.
Ahead of the budget, Modi - who came to power in May 2014 and faces re-election by mid-2019 - said in an interview with the Times Now news channel on January 21 that it is "a myth" that the average person wants sops and freebies, rebuffing the idea that the budget must be populist.
Scrapping the colonial-era tradition of presenting the Budget at the end of February, Jaitley had for the first time presented the annual accounts on February 1 a year ago.
Pankaj Kumar Jain, Managing Director, KW Group said, "We have a lot of expectations from this year's budget as the real estate sector is completely marred by rising input cost and week buying sentiments".
The government will need to take a call between cutting expenditure on the one hand to maintain the deficit, and in turn partly stymieing growth, and on the other splurging in the budget, thereby maintaining a higher deficit target for the next year.
NRIs also expect legal reforms to enable them to invest in agricultural properties and look for the removal of dividend distribution tax as it discourages companies from paying dividends, which dampens investor confidence. Nomura says "this largesse is to be funded through a cyclical pick-up in GDP growth (better tax buoyancy) and increased GST proceeds (better tax compliance)".More news: Mercedes-Benz, Volkswagen, BMW Dragged in Animal Cruelty Controversy
Latest Goods and Services Tax (GST) data shows a large increase in registration by small and medium enterprises (SMEs) to avail input tax credits, said the Economic Survey on Monday. By October, the government had already spent about 60 per cent of the total spending, while tax collection remained at 48 per cent of the target.
The government is expected to increase import duty on certain items related to power, capital goods and chemicals sectors to give a boost to domestic manufacturing and its "Make In India" programme.
On the revenue front, I expect a further rationalisation of direct tax rates - both corporate as well as individuals. The budget may also have something in store for start ups.
Analysts at Deloitte India said given that growth momentum was hit on account of certain structural changes, the focus of the current budget is likely to be on alleviating the built-up stress in the rural economy, especially in the agricultural domain given the prevailing agricultural distress, which has led to falling farm incomes. It can also be seen on the YouTube webcast of Rajya Sabha TV.
All eyes will be on the fiscal consolidation roadmap and the government's borrowing plans. Before that, the budget used to be presented on the last day of February.