Interim budget may see some change in taxes: Chidambaram

New Delhi, Feb 3: The government is likely to announce some changes in excise and service taxes in the interim budget to be presented in parliament Feb 17, a couple of months before the general elections, Finance Minister P Chidambaram said Monday.

Addressing a press conference here ahead of the beginning of the parliament session, Chidambaram, however, said the government would tinker only with taxes that are essential to revive the economic growth.

“We cannot propose amendments to the Income Tax Act, Customs Act or the Excise Act. But any proposal short of amending a law can be made,” the finance minister said.

Chidambaram said the government would also outline vision for the future in the vote-on-account.

According to the finance minister, an interim budget for the financial year 2014-15 will be presented in the Lok Sabha Feb 17.

The main budget for the fiscal will be presented by the new government that will come into power after the general election due by May.

The interim budget, or vote-on-account will be presented during the second part of winter session beginning from Feb 5.

“The session subject to exigencies of business may conclude on the Friday 21st February 2014,” according to a statement released by the Parliamentary Affairs ministry.

Chidambaram said the interim budget speech will be short between 12 to 18 pages.

“In 2004, Mr. Jaswant Singh made a 12-page speech. In 2009, Mr. Mukherjee made an 18-page speech. So I have two numbers to choose from between 12 to 18,” he said.

IANS