Amidst the uproar from the opposition to table the union budget after the assembly elections in five states, Finance Minister Arun Jaitley tables the Union Budget today in the parliament. This time, the 2017 budget was slightly different than it used to be. This time, the union budget also includes the railway’s budget, which was a separate identity. We can’t comment on what made Finance Minister merge both the budget, lets hope for the best. If in case you have missed Arun Jaitley’s budget, here’s the highlight from the 2-hour long introduction.
Jaitley divided his budget proposal into 10 distinct themes: Farmers; rural population; energizing youth; poor and underprivileged; infrastructure; financial sector; digital economy; public service; prudent fiscal management; and tax administration.
1) Government will set-up mini labs for in Krishi Vigyan Kendras to regulate soil quality
2) Long-term irrigation fund in Nabard—corpus at Rs40,000 crore
3) Farmer credit fixed at record level of Rs10 trillion; will ensure adequate flow to underserved areas
1) Rs 48,000 is allocated for MGNREGA. Women participation has rised to 55%.
2) Target to achieve 100% electrification to villages by May 2018
3) Rs 27,000 crore to be spent under Pradhan Mantri Gram Sadak Yojana.
4) Rs 4,500 crore allocated under Rural livelihood Mission
5) Rs1,87,223 crore allocated for rural programmes
1) Emphasis on innovation and teaching is focussed.
2) UGC colleges to be reformed and given more autonomy
3) Focussed on virtual learning. Launches SWAYAM platform for the same.
4) Relieving off AICTE and CBSE for entrance exams, National testing agency to be formed.
5) 100 Indian international skill centres to be established with courses in foreign languages
POOR AND UNPRIVILEGED:
1) To empower women, Women Shakti Centre to be formed on a budget of Rs 500 crore.
2) Action plan to eliminate leprosy by 2018, TB by 2025, reduce IMR to 29 in 2019
3) Additional PG seats to be increased every year.
4) Two new AIIMS in Jharkhand and Gujarat.
5) Allocation to SCs increased to Rs52,393 crore; STs given Rs31,920 crore, minority affairs allocated Rs 4,195 crore
6) Senior citizens: Aadhaar-based smart cards with health details to be provided.
1) Unmanned level crossings to be eliminated by 2020.
2) Dedicated tourism and pilgrimages train to be started.
3) 500 stations to be made differently able friendly.
4) SMS service to clean the coach will be started. Bio-toilets for all coaches.
5) Railways to offer competitive ticket-booking facility; service charge withdrawn for tickets booked on IRCTC
6) Digi-gau initiative to be launched
1) Foreign Investment Promotion Board (FIPB) to be abolished
2) Dealing with the increasing cyber-attack in the country, Computer emergency response team to be set up
3) Integrated public sector oil major to be created.
4) Over 16,000 new enterprises have been set up under Stand-up India scheme
1) Cashback scheme for merchants to be introduced to promote BHIM app.
2) Aadhaar Pay to be launched for people who don’t have mobile phones.
3) Focus on rural and semi-urban areas.
1) Head Post-Office will be used for passport services.
2) A centralised defence travel system will be set up only for the defence personnel.
3) Looking ways to confiscate properties of tax defaulters, including who had fled the country.
4) PM to chair a high-level panel to commemorate Mahatma Gandhi’s 150th birth anniversary.
1) Defence expenditure excluding pensions: Rs2.74 trillion
2) Rs3,000 crore to implement various budget announcements
1) To tighten the noose around political funding in the party, donations under Rs 2,000 will not attract scrutiny in any form, cheque or digitally.
2) Personal income tax: Rate reduced to 5% for income bracket of Rs2.5-5 lakh; All other categories to get uniform benefit of Rs12,500 per person; to levy surcharge on income bracket Rs50 lakh-Rs1 crore
3) GST: preparedness of IT system on schedule
4) Time period of revising tax returns reduced to 12 months
5) Corporate tax rate: MSMEs’ rate (annual turnover less than Rs50crore) reduced to 25%
6) LNG: Reduce customs duty to 2.5%
7) Limit of cash donation for charitable trusts cut to Rs2,000.
And that sums up the #Budget2017. How do you like it? Comment it below.