Highlights of Interim Budget 2024-25
Moneylife Digital Team/ IANS 01 February 2024
Finance minister (FM) Nirmala Sitharaman presented the Interim Union Budget 2024-25 in Parliament on Thursday.
 
Some of the key highlights of the Budget are: social justice, Garib Kalyan, Desh ka Kalyan, Welfare of ‘Annadata’, and Momentum for Nari Shakti.
 
On infrastructure, she said that the capital expenditure (capex) outlay for infrastructure development and employment generation will be increased by 11.1% to Rs11,11,111 crore, that will be 3.4% of the GDP.
 
On reforms in the states for ‘Viksit Bharat’, she said that a provision of Rs75,000 crore rupees as 50-year interest free loan has been proposed to support milestone-linked reforms by the state governments.
 
She said that three major economic railway corridor programmes identified under the PM Gati Shakti will also be implemented to improve logistics efficiency and reduce cost energy, mineral and cement corridors, port connectivity corridors, and high traffic density corridors.
 
“Forty thousand normal rail bogies will also be converted to Vande Bharat standards,” she said.
 
About the aviation sector, she said that the number of airports in the country have doubled to 149 airports.
 
“Five hundred and seventeen new routes are carrying at least 1.3 crore passengers. We have also placed orders for over 1,000 new aircrafts,” she said.
 
On ‘Garib Kalyan, Desh ka Kalyan’, she said that the government has assisted 250mn (million) people out of multi-dimensional poverty in the last 10 years.
 
“DBT of Rs34 lakh crore using PM-Jan Dhan accounts led to savings of Rs2.7 lakh crore for the government. PM-SVANidhi provided credit assistance to 78 lakh street vendors. At least 2.3 lakh have received credit for the third time,” she said.
 
On welfare of ‘Annadata’, she said that the PM-Kisan Samman Yojana has provided financial assistance to 118mn farmers.
 
“Under PM Fasal BimaYojana, crop insurance has been given to 4 crore farmers,” she said.
 
She said that electronic national agriculture market (e-NAM) has integrated 1361 mandis, providing services to 18mn farmers with a trading volume of Rs3 lakh crore.
 
On Nari Shakti, she said that 300mn Mudra Yojana loans have been given to women entrepreneurs.
 
“Female enrolment in higher education has gone up by 28%,” she said.
 
She said that in STEM courses, girls and women constitute 43% of enrolment which is one of the highest in the world.
 
“Over 70% houses—under PM Awas Yojana—have been given to women from rural areas,” she said.
 
On PM Awas Yojana (Grameen) she said that, despite COVID challenges, the target of 30mn houses under PM Awas Yojana (Grameen) will be achieved soon.
 
“At least two crore more houses will be taken up in the next five years,” she said.
 
She also mentioned rooftop solarisation and 'muft bijli', saying that 10mn households will obtain 300 units free electricity every month through rooftop solarisation.
 
“Each household is expected to save Rs15,000 to Rs18,000 annually due to rooftop solarisation,” she said.
 
On Ayushman Bharat, she said that healthcare coverage under Ayushman Bharat scheme will be extended to all ASHA workers, Anganwadi workers and helpers.
 
On agriculture and food processing, the FM said that Pradhan Mantri Kisan Sampada Yojana has benefitted 3.8mn farmers and generated at least 1mn employment.
 
“Pradhan Mantri Formalisation of Micro Food Processing Enterprises Yojana has assisted 2.4 lakh SHGs and 60000 individuals with credit linkages,” she said.
 
“A corpus of Rs1 lakh crore will be established with 50-year interest-free loan to provide long-term financing or refinancing with long tenors and low or nil interest rates,” she mentioned about research and innovation for catalysing growth, employment and development.
 
Here are highlights of the Budget...
 
Part A

Social Justice

  • Prime Minister to focus on the upliftment of four major castes, that is, ‘Garib’ (Poor), ‘Mahilayen’ (Women), ‘Yuva’ (Youth) and  ‘Annadata’(Farmer).

‘Garib Kalyan, Desh ka Kalyan’

  • Government assisted 25 crore people out of multi-dimensional poverty in the last 10 years.
  • Direct benefit transfer (DBT) of Rs34 lakh crore using PM-Jan Dhan accounts led to savings of Rs2.7 lakh crore for the Government.
  • PM-SVANidhi provided credit assistance to 78 lakh street vendors. 2.3 lakh have received credit for the third time.
  • PM-JANMAN Yojana to aid the development of particularly vulnerable tribal groups (PVTG).
  • PM-Vishwakarma Yojana provides end-to-end support to artisans and crafts people engaged in 18 trades.

Welfare of ‘Annadata’

  • PM-KISAN SAMMAN Yojana provided financial assistance to 11.8 crore farmers. 
  • Under PM Fasal BimaYojana, crop insurance is given to 4 crore farmers
  • Electronic National Agriculture Market (e-NAM) integrated 1361 mandis, providing services to 1.8 crore farmers with trading volume of Rs. 3 lakh crore.

Momentum for Nari Shakti

  • 30 crore Mudra Yojana loans given to women entrepreneurs.
  • Female enrolment in higher education gone up by 28%.
  • In STEM courses, girls and women constitute 43% of enrolment, one of the highest in the world.
  • Over 70% houses under PM Awas Yojana given to women from rural areas.

PM Awas Yojana (Grameen)

  • Despite COVID challenges, the target of three crore houses under PM Awas Yojana (Grameen) will be achieved soon.
  • Two crore more houses to be taken up in the next five years.

Rooftop solarization and muft bijli

  • 1 crore households to obtain 300 units free electricity every month through rooftop solarization.
  • Each household is expected to save Rs.15000 to Rs.18000 annually.

Ayushman Bharat

  • Healthcare cover under the Ayushman Bharat scheme to be extended to all ASHA workers, Anganwadi Workers and Helpers.

Agriculture and food processing

  • Pradhan Mantri Kisan Sampada Yojana has benefitted 38 lakh farmers and generated 10 lakh employment.
  • Pradhan Mantri Formalisation of Micro Food Processing Enterprises Yojana has assisted 2.4 lakh SHGs and 60000 individuals with credit linkages.

Research and Innovation for catalyzing growth, employment and development

  • A corpus of Rs1 lakh crore to be established with a fifty-year interest-free loan to provide long-term financing or refinancing with long tenors and low or nil interest rates.
  • A new scheme is to be launched for strengthening deep-tech technologies for defence purposes and expediting ‘atmanirbharta’.

Infrastructure

  • Capital expenditure outlay for Infrastructure development and employment generation to be increased by 11.1 per cent to Rs11,11,111 crore, that will be 3.4 per cent of the GDP.

Railways

  • 3 major economic railway corridor programmes identified under the PM Gati Shakti to be implemented to improve logistics efficiency and reduce cost
    • Energy, mineral and cement corridors
    • Port connectivity corridors
    • High-traffic density corridors
  • Forty thousand normal rail bogies are to be converted to Vande Bharat standards.

Aviation Sector

  • Number of airports in the country doubled to 149.
  • Five hundred and seventeen new routes are carrying 1.3 crore passengers.
  • Indian carriers have placed orders for over 1,000 new aircraft.

Green Energy

  • Coal gasification and liquefaction capacity of 100MT to be set up by 2030.
  • Phased mandatory blending of compressed biogas (CBG) in compressed natural gas (CNG) for transport and piped natural gas (PNG) for domestic purposes to be mandated.

Tourism sector

  • States to be encouraged to take up comprehensive development of iconic tourist centres, including their branding and marketing at the global scale.
  • Framework for rating of the tourist centres based on quality of facilities and services to be established.
  • Long-term interest-free loans to be provided to States for financing such development on a matching basis.

Investments

  • FDI inflow during 2014-23 of US$596 billion was twice the inflow during 2005-14.

Reforms in the States for ‘Viksit Bharat’

  • A provision of Rs75,000 crore rupees as a fifty-year interest-free loan is proposed to support milestone-linked reforms by the State Governments.

Revised Estimates (RE) 2023-24

  • RE of the total receipts other than borrowings is Rs27.56 lakh crore, of which the tax receipts are Rs23.24 lakh crore.
  • RE of the total expenditure is Rs44.90 lakh crore.
  • Revenue receipts at Rs30.03 lakh crore are expected to be higher than the Budget Estimate, reflecting strong growth momentum and formalization in the economy.
  • RE of the fiscal deficit is 5.8 per cent of GDP for 2023-24.

Budget Estimates 2024-25

  • Total receipts other than borrowings and the total expenditure are estimated at Rs30.80 and Rs47.66 lakh crore, respectively.
  • Tax receipts are estimated at Rs.26.02 lakh crore.   
  • Scheme of 50-year interest-free loan for capital expenditure to states to be continued this year with total outlay of Rs1.3 lakh crore.
  • Fiscal deficit in 2024-25 is estimated to be 5.1 per cent of GDP
  • Gross and net market borrowings through dated securities during 2024-25 are estimated at Rs14.13 and Rs11.75 lakh crore, respectively.

Part B

Direct taxes

  • FM proposes to retain the same tax rates for direct taxes
  • Direct tax collection tripled, and return filers increased to 2.4 times in the last 10 years
  • Government to improve taxpayer services
    • Outstanding direct tax demands up to Rs25,000 pertaining to the period up to FY09-10 withdrawn
    • Outstanding direct tax demands up to Rs10,000 for FY10-11 to FY14-15 withdrawn
    • This will benefit one crore taxpayers
  • Tax benefits to Start-Ups, investments made by Sovereign wealth funds or pension funds extended to 31 March 2025
  • Tax exemption on certain income of IFSC units extended by a year to 31 March 2025 from 31 March 2024

Indirect taxes

  • FM proposes to retain the same tax rates for indirect taxes and import duties
  • GST unified the highly fragmented indirect tax regime in India
    • Average monthly gross GST collection doubled to Rs1.66 lakh crore this year
    • GST tax base has doubled
    • State  SGST revenue buoyancy (including compensation released to states) increased to 1.22  in post-GST period (2017-18 to 2022-23) from 0.72 in the pre-GST period (2012-13 to 2015-16)
    • 94% of industry leaders view the transition to GST as largely positive
    • GST led to supply chain optimization
    • GST reduced the compliance burden on trade and industry
    • Lower logistics costs and taxes  helped reduce the prices of goods and services, benefiting the consumers

Tax rationalization efforts over the years

  • No tax liability for income up to Rs7 lakh, up from Rs2.2 lakh in  FY13-14
  • Presumptive taxation threshold for retail businesses increased to Rs3 crore from Rs2 crore
  • Presumptive taxation threshold for professionals increased to Rs75 lakh from Rs50 lakh
  • Corporate income tax decreased to 22% from 30% for existing domestic companies
  • Corporate income tax rate at 15% for new manufacturing companies

Achievements in tax-payer services

  • Average processing time of tax returns has reduced to 10 days from 93 days in 2013-14
  • Faceless Assessment and Appeal introduced for greater efficiency
  • Updated income tax returns, new form 26AS and prefilled tax returns for simplified return filing
  • Reforms in customs leading to reduced Import release time
    • Reduction by 47% to 71 hours at Inland Container Depots
    • Reduction by 28% to 44 hours at  Air Cargo complexes
    • Reduction by 27% to 85 hours at Sea Ports

Economy-then and now

  • In 2014, there was a responsibility to mend the economy and put governance systems in order. The need of the hour was to:
    • Attract investments
    • Build support to the much-needed reforms
    • Give hope to the people
  •  The government succeeded with a strong belief of ‘nation-first’
  • “It is now appropriate to look at where we were till 2014 and where we are now”: FM
  • The Government will lay a White Paper on the table of the house.

 

Comments
r_ashok41
3 months ago
hope there will be something for the sr citizens after the elections.
this govt has not done anything for the sr citizens from 2014 as far as i can recollect except removing concessions during the covid period in the railways in the name of to reduce travel
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