Prime Minster Narendra Modi addressed the nation after the first union budget of NDA 2.0 was presented in the Lok Sabha today. Terming the Annual financial statement as “Green Budget”, PM Modi said the budget allocation was taken up in the right direction to fulfill the aspirations of 21st century India.
Modi claimed the budget proposals will boost the infrastructure development in the country while and benefit middle classes.
Nirmala Sitharaman, India’s first full-fledged woman Finance Minister in nearly five decades presented the General Budget 2019-20 in the Lok Sabha. This is the first budget of the NDA government after winning a second term with thumping majority.
Nirmala Sitharaman was seen carrying the budget document in ‘bahi Khata’ instead of the conventional brief case. Finance Minister along with Minister of State Anurag Thakur has given the final touches to the budget statement last evening.
The annual financial statement gives the details of revenue and expenditure of the state and the allocation of existing resources to different sectors in priority. The document outlines all the economic achievements of the government and targets for upcoming new projects that will avail funds from the Consolidated Fund of India (CFI).
Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman met the President of India Ramnath Kovind before presenting the budget. Follow all the live updates here.
Nirmala Sitharaman also proposed to increase special additional excise duty and road and infrastructure cess each one by 1 rupee a litre on petrol and diesel making it costlier.
Easing the compliance norms for filing Income tax returns for taxpayers FM proposed to make PAN and Aadhaar interchangeable to file IT returns.
A new series of coins of Rs. 1, Rs 2, Rs. 5, Rs. 10 and Rs. 20 easily identifiable to the visually impaired will be introduced. New coins to be made available for public use soon says FM.
Tax Deducted at Source (TDS) of 2% for cash withdrawal exceeding Rs 2 Crore from a bank account annually.
An additional Tax reduction of up to 1.5 lakh rupees for buyers of Electric Vehicles. Government has also made a proposal at the GST Council to keep the tax rate on Electric Vehicles (EV) between 5 percent to 12 percent.
Corporate tax rate of 25 percent is extended to companies with a turnover of up to 400 crore which was earlier applicable to companies of up to 250 crore only. Over 90 percent companies fall under this bracket leaving only 0.7 percent companies will be outside the benefit.
Non-Resident Indians (NRIs) will be issued Aadhaar cards on arrival without waiting.
Finance Minister said the water supply will be integrated in a holistic manner to achieve ‘Har Ghar Jal’ through the newly formed Jal Shakti Matralaya to ensure water supply to all rural houses by 2024 under Jal Jeevan Mission. Safe drinking water to every citizen is the priority of the government.
Raising the slogan “Nari to Narayani” for women, FM said one woman in every self-help group (SHG) will be allowed a loan of Rs 1 lakh. Every woman SHG member having a verified Jan Dhan account will get an overdraft facility of Rs 5,000.
New Space India Limited (NSIL), a public sector enterprise, has been incorporated to tap the benefits of R&D carried out by ISRO. The company will spearhead commercialization of various space products,” Sitharaman said. NSIL would function as the commercial arm of ISRO to tap the benefits of research and development carried out by the space agency. The new entity would be responsible for the marketing of space products, transfers of technology and arranging commercial space launches with ISRO.
“We will increase our efforts to improve the skills of our youth in newer areas such as Artifical Intelligence, Big Data, Robotics, etc valued highly within and outside the country to ensure they can secure high paying jobs both in India and abroad,” she says.
Nearly 95% of all cities have declared themselves open-defecation free. More than 45,000 public toilets have been uploaded on google maps and nearly 1 crore citizens have downloaded the Swachhta app, she says.
The government proposes a National Education Policy to transform and take India’s higher education system to global standards, she says
A ‘Gandhipedia’ is being developed by National Council for Science Museums to sensitise people of positive Gandhian values, she says.
Nearly 1.95 crore houses are proposed to be provided to eligible beneficiaries under the Pradhan Mantri Awas Yojana, she points out. The completion of houses that required 314 days in 2015-16, it has now come down to 114 days since 2017, she highlights.
Various steps to be taken to strengthen Gramin Bharat – Rural India
This year as we mark the 150 birth anniversary of Mahatma Gandhi. Gaav, Garib aur Kisan will remain at the centre of all our initiatives, she says. Two mega initiatives Ujjwala and Saubhagya have dramatically improved ease of living, easy access of clean cooking gas, and electricity supply to the needy, she says. 10,000 new Farmer Producer Organizations (FPO) to be set up along with a new rationalized APMC laws.
A new Credit Guarantee Enhancement Corporation will be set up in 2019-20, with an aim to deepen markets for long-term bonds with specific focus on infrastructure sector which will provide an additional cushion for banking sector said Sitharaman.
The government is contemplating organising an annual global meet to get all three sets of global players: Industrialists, corporate leaders, corporate sovereign and venture funds, she says.
An allocation of 350 Cr Rupees was given to the Interest Subvention Scheme (ISS) of 2 percent for MSMEs for both fresh loans as well as incremental loans.
India’s FDI flows in 2018-19 remained strong compared to global at $54.2 billion, 6 percent higher than last year. The government will examine options of opening up FDI in media, animation and some other sectors to improve these flows further, she says.
A new social security scheme Pradhan Mantri Karma Yogi Maan Dhan Scheme (PMKYMDS) providing pensions for shopkeepers and retailers with a turnover less than 1.5 crore was launched in Budget 2019.
To boost investments in infrastructure, FM Sitharaman said it is crucial to strengthen the corporate bond market. The KYC norms for Foreign Portfolio Investors (FPI) will be rationalized and provide a hassle free cross border capital flow. “It’s right time to consider increasing minimum public shareholding in the listed companies from 25% to 35%” she added. The government plans to allow FPIs to Subscribe to listed debt papers of REITs and InviTs, she says, adding there is also a proposal to merge NRI portfolio route with FPI routes.
Nirmala Sitharaman said the Centre would soon roll out a Model Tenancy Law for all the states as the tenancy laws are not uniform and are causing immense inconvenience to the migrants and residents alike. Current rental laws are archaic as they do not assess the relation between the lessor and lessee in a fair manner. The government will look at improving the laws, she says.
Connectivity is at the heart of development said Finance Minister and recited all the initiatives taken up by the government over the last five years including- Pradhan Mantri Gram Sadak Yojana, Bharatmala, Sagarmala, freight corridors, industrial corridors, Jal Marg Vikas to promote inland waterways, UDAN to promote Air travel in tier 2 cities among others.
Finance Minister proposed public private partnership in Railways. She said Railway infrastructure would need an investment of up to 50 Lakh crore between 2018 and 2030.
With an aim to implement ‘one nation one grid’ in power sector Finance Minister proposes a blue print for gas and water grids.
India is the sixth largest economy in the world. In terms of Purchasing Power Parity (PPP) India is the third largest economy only next to china and USA. It took India 55 years to reach 1$ trillion economy. The NDA government in its first term had successfully added another trillion. Therefore is absolutely possible to become a 5$ Trillion economy. This year alone the government has set a vision for India to become a 3 Trillion economy. She said if we had “Asha, Vishwas and Akansha anything is possible.
Congratulating the voters for giving a huge mandate Finance Minister presents her maiden budget in the Lok Sabha. She claims the government led by a clear headed leadership is all set to realise the vision of ‘New India.’