Union Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman presented Union Budget 2021-22 in Lok Sabha on Monday (January 1).
This budget was special in many ways as it was being presented amidst challenges like coronavirus pandemic. In such a situation, the eyes of common people and special people werre set on the announcements.
FM Sitharaman announced a package of Rs 27.1 lakh to deal with COVID-19 pandemic under Atmanirbhar Package.
This is the ninth Budget under the Modi government and third Budget of FM Sitharaman. The Budget is widely expected to focus on boosting spending on job creation and rural development, generous allocations for development schemes, putting more money in the hands of the average taxpayer and easing rules to attract foreign investments.
Here are the key highlights of the Union Budget 2021-22:
The government has announced a package of totalling Rs. 27.1 lakh to deal with COVID-19 pandemic under Astmanirbhar Package. Aatmanirbhar package has accelerated the structural reforms across the country. India has started the nation-wide vaccination programme which is the largest in the world.
India has approved two vaccines (Covaxin and Covishield) and two more vaccines will be launched soon said Finance Minister Nirmala Sithraman. The government will provide Rs. 35,000 crore for COVID-19 vaccination. The Finance Minister has committed to providing more funds.
Finance Minister Nirmala Sithraman has proposed introduction of Aatmanirbhar Swastha Bharat health program with an outlay of Rs. 64,180 crores, this will act as an addition to the existing National Health Mission.
Finance Minister has given the main pillars of Union Budget 2021-22:
– Health and well-being
– Physical and financial capital and infrastructure
– Inclusive development for aspirational India
– Reinvigorating human capital
– Innovation and R&D
– Minimum government and maximum governance
Mission Poshan 2.0
The government will be launching Mission Poshan 2.0, Jal Jeevan Mission Urban will be introduced. Finance Minister said that ” The urban Swachh Bharat Scheme will be implemented with an outlay of over Rs. 1.4 lakh crore.
Vehicle Scrapping Policy
The government has launched the voluntary scrapping policy in order to remove unfit/ outdated vehicles from the streets. Passenger vehicles beyond 20 years and commercial vehicles beyond 15 years will need to go through a vehicle fitness test.
Road development in Bengal gets Rs. 95,000 crore
Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman announced Rs. 95,000 crore for the development of roads in the state of Bengal. The still will conduct polls in coming months.
11,000 km of National highway infrastructure in 2021
Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman said that ” Government aims to complete 11,000 km of national highway infrastructure this year” Tamil Nadu gets a corridor of 3,500 km. Kerala will get 1,100 km which includes investment worth Rs. 65,000 crore. 675 km in West Bengal which costs Rs. 95,000 crore. 1,300 km in Assam promised over next three years.
Rs. 1.10 lakh crore allotted for Indian Railways
Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman announced Rs. 1.10 lakh crore to Indian Railways, Rs. 1.7 lakh crore is for the capital expenditure of the allotment.
Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman announced Central fiscal funding to Bangalore Metro, Chennai Metro, Nagpur Metro, Kochi Metro, Nashik Metro projects across the nation.
Rs. 3.05 lakh crore for Power sector
Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman announced Rs. 3.05 lakh crore for the power sector in the country. Finance Minister added that 100 more cities will be added to the Gas distribution network in the next three years.
Gas pipeline project in Jammu and Kashmir
Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman announced a brand new gas pipeline project for the development of Jammu and Kashmir.
Rs. 20,000 crore for Public sector banks
Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman announced further infusion of Rs. 20,000 crore for the public sector banks.
LIC IPO to launch this year
Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman said that “The government plans to sell part of holding in Life Insurance Corporation of India (LIC) through an initial public offering (IPO) in the coming year. An amendment to the existing Act to facilitate the public offer.”
Government committed to farmers welfare
Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman amid the protest from opposition leaders said that ” The government is committed to the welfare of farmers. The MSP has gone through a sea change. Over Rs. 75,000 crore paid to wheat farmers in the years 2020-21; 43.36 lakh farmers have benefitted from this.”
Government to push Ujjawala scheme
The government will be extending the benefits of the Ujjawala scheme to additional 1 crore people. Ujjawala scheme provides LPG connections with a financial subsidy from the central government. The scheme benefits 12 crore households right now and will be extended further to provide clean and cheap cooking fuel.
Agriculture credit target to Rs. 16.5 lakh crore
Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman proposes an increase in agriculture credit target to Rs. 16.5 lakh crore. Nirmala Sitharaman said that ” The MSP regime has undergone a change to assure price that is at least 1.5 times the cost of the production across all the commodities. The total amount paid to paddy farmers surged to Rs. 1.72 lakh crore on 2020-21.”
Disinvest target for FY2022 at Rs. 1.75 lakh crore
Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman puts disinvestment receipts at Rs. 1.75 lakh crore for the fiscal year beginning April 1, 2021. Two PSBs and one general insurance company to be disinvested, legislations and amendments to be introduced in this session.
National education policy
Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman said that “National Education Policy got a good reception. Over 15,000 schools to be qualitatively strengthened under National Education Policy.”
Rs. 1,500 crore for promotion of Digital Payments
Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman announced Rs. 1,500 crore for promoting a digital mode of payment.
Rs. 1000 crore for Assam, Bengal tea workers
Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman announced a special scheme for welfare of women and children in Assam and West Bengal. Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman announced Rs. 1000 for the tea workers in Assam and Bengal.
Rs. 3,768 crore for Census
Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman announced Rs. 3,768 for the census. The next census will be the first digital census in the history of Independent India.
Exemption for filling tax for elderly
Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman said ” In the 75th year of independence of our country, we shall reduce the compliance burden on senior citizens. For senior citizens who only have a pension and interest income, I propose exemption of filling of income tax returns.”