The budget by finance minister Nirmala Sitharaman comes as a boost for the pandemic-battered economy and to steer India with the much-needed stimulus to boost demand and consumer confidence.
Here is a look at a few proposals in the budget.
- India’s fiscal deficit is set to jump to 9.5 per cent of Gross Domestic Product in 2020-21. This is sharply higher than 3.5 per cent of GDP that was project in the budget estimates. Slump in government revenues amid the Covid-19 pandemic has led to sharp rise in deficit and market borrowing. The government plans to borrow another Rs 80,000 crore to fund the deficit this year. Gross market borrowings for next year has been pegged at Rs 12 lakh crore.
2. For senior citizens who only have pension and interest income, exemption of filing of income tax returns.
3. Special scheme for welfare of women and children in Assam and West Bengal. Rs 1,000 crore for Bengal, Assam tea workers.
4. Social security benefits to be extended to gig and platform workers. Minimum wages will apply to all categories of workers and will be covered under ESIC. This will impact around 15 million gig workers in India, in addition to online platform providers across sectors such as transportation (Uber and Ola), food delivery (Swiggy and Zomato), and the contract workers in IT and software firms.
5. Rs 1,500 crore earmarked for promoting digital mode of payment
6. The FDI in insurance increased to 74% from 49%. Plan to issue IPO of LIC for which requisite amendments to be brought in this session itself.
7. New centrally sponsored scheme PM Aatmanirbhar Swasth Bharat Yojana to be launched with an outlay of Rs 64,180 crore over 6 years.
8 . Main interventions under PM Aatmanirbhar Swasth Bharat Yojana would include:
– Support for Health and Wellness Centres
– Setting up Integrated Public Health labs in all districts
– Critical care hospital blocks
– Strengthening of NCDC
9. Ujjwala scheme to be expanded to over one crore more beneficiaries. We will add 100 more districts in the next three years to the city gas distribution network. A gas pipeline project will be taken up in Jammu and Kashmir.
10. The definition of small companies to be revised by raising capital base to Rs 2 crore from current limit of Rs 50 lakh.