Highlights of Digital Union Budget 2021-22

On 1st February, 2021, Union Minister of Finance and Corporate Affairs Smt. Nirmala Sitharaman presented the first ever Digital Union Budget and She stated that India's fight against COVID-19 continues into 2021 and that this movement in history, when the political, economic, and strategic relations in the post-COVID world are changing, is the dawn of a new era - one on which India is wwell-poised to truly be the land of promise and hope.

6 Pillars of Budget 2021-2022 :

I. Health and Wellbeing
II. Physical & Financial Capital, and Infrastructure
III. Inclusive Development for Aspirational India
IV. Reinvigorating Human Capital
V. Innovation and R&D
VI. Minimum Government and Maximum Governance

Highlights of Important 6 Pillars of Union Budget 2021-22 :

I. Health and Wellbeing :

• Budget Estimate (2021-22) Increase 137% : From Rs. 94,452 crore in 2020-21 to Rs. 2,23,846 crore in BE 2020-22.

• Strengthening Three Focus Areas :  Preventive, Curative, and Wellbeing.

• Various steps for Improving health and wellbeing :

# Vaccines :
✓ Rs. 35,000 crore for COVID-19 vaccine in BE 2021-22.
✓ Presently, the Made-in-India  Pneumococcal Vaccination in 5 States of  the Country - to save 50,000 child deaths annually.

# Health Systems :
✓ Allocates Rs. 64,180 crore over 6 years for PM AtmaNirbhar Swasth Bharat Yojana - A new centrally sponsored scheme to be launched, in addition to NHM.

# Nutrition :
Mission Poshan 2.0 to be launched : 
To improve nutritional outcomes across 112 Aspirational Districts.

# Universal Coverage of Water Supply :
Rs. 2,87,000 crore over 5 years for Jal Jeevan Mission (Urban) - to be launched with an aim to provide -
+ 2.86 crore household tap connections
+ Universal Water supply in all 4,378 Urban Local Bodies
+ Liquid waste management in 500 AMRUT cities.

# Swachch Bharat, Swasth Bharat :
Rs. 1,41,678 crore over 5 year for Urban Swachh Bharat Mission 2.0.

# Clean Air :
Rs. 2,217 crore to tackle air pollution, for 42 Urban centres with a mmillion-plus population.

# Scrapping Policy :
Voluntary vehicle scrapping policy to phase out old and unfit vehicles.
Fitness Tests -
+ After 20 years in case of personal vehicles
+ After 15 years in case of commercial vehicles.

II. Physical and Financial Capital and Infrastructure :

# Production Linked Incentive Scheme (PLI) :
+ PLI schemes in 13 sectors to create and nature  manufacturing global champions for an AtmaNirbhar Bharat.
+ To provide jobs to the Youth.

# Textiles :
+ Mega Investment Textile Parks (MITRA) scheme, in addition to PLI - 7 Textile Parks
to be established over 3 years

# Infrastructure :
To increase funding for three areas of National Infrastructure Pipeline (NIP) -
i. Creation of institutional structure
ii. Big thrust on monetising assets
iii. Enhancing the share of capital expenditure

# Railway Infrastructure
+ To create a 'future ready' Railway system by 2030 under National Railway Plan for India (2030).
+ 100% electrification of Broad-Gauge routes to be completed by December, 2023.
+ Eastern and Western Dedicated Freight Corridor (DFC) to be commissioned by June 2022, to bring down the logistic costs - enabling Make in India strategy.

#  Urban Infrastructure :
+ Raising the share of Public transport  by increase Metro Rail network and bus services.
+ Innovative PPP models to run more than 20,000 buses.
+ Introduce 'MetroLite' and 'MetroNeo' technologies.

# Power Infrastructure :
+ 139 Giga Watts of installed capacity and 1.41 lakh circuit km of transmission lines added, and additional 2.8 crore households connected in past 6 years.
+ A comprehensive National Hydrogen Energy Mission 2021-22 to be launched.

# Ports, Shipping, Waterways :
+ Allocate Rs. 2,000 crore worth 7 projects to be offered in PPP-mode in FY21-22 for operation of major ports.

# Petroleum & Natural Gas :
+ Extension of Ujjwala Scheme to cover 1 crore more beneficiaries.
+ Add 100 more districts to the City Gas Distribution of Network in next 3 years.
+ A new gas pipeline project in J&K.

# Financial Capital :
+ A single Security Markets Code to be evolved
+ Support for development of a world class Fin-Tech hub at the GIFT-IFSC
+ Setting up a system of Regulated Gold Exchanges : notified by SEBI.
+ Capital infusion of Rs. 1,000 crore to Solar Energy Corporation of India and Rs. 1,500 crore to Indian Renewable Energy Development Agency.

# Increasing FDI in Insurance Sector :
To increase the permissible FDI limit from 49% to 74% and allow foreign ownership and control with safeguards.

# Company Matters :
+ To decriminalise the Limited Liability Partnership (LLP) Act, 2008
+ Promoting start-ups and innovators by incentivizing the incorporation of One Person Companies (OPCs)
+ Allowing Non Resident Indians (NRIs) to incorporate OPCs in India.

# Disinvestment and Strategic Sale :
+ Strategic disinvestment of BPCL, Air India, Shipping Corporation of India, Container Corporation of India, IDBI Bank, BEML, Pawan Hans, Neelachal Ispat Nigam Limited etc. to be completed in 2021-22.
+ IPO of LIC in 2021-22.

# Government Financial Reforms :
Treasury Single Account (TSA) System for Autonomous Bodies to be extended for universal application.

III. Inclusive Development for Aspirational India :

# Agriculture :
+ To increase agriculture and allied sectors productivity to achieve goals of doable farmers income. 
+ Budget ensured at minimum 1.5 times the cost of production across all commodities.

# Migrant Workers and Labourers :
+ One Nation One Ration Card scheme : To benefits workers (mostly migrant workers) for claim rations anywhere in the country.
+ Implementation of  4 labour codes underway.
+ Women safety in night-shift.

# Financial Inclusion :
+ By the scheme of Stand Up India for SCs, STs and Women.
+ Provide loans for allied agricultural activities.
+ Rs. 15,700 crore budget allocation to MSME Sector, more than double of this year's BE.

IV. Reinvigorating Human Capital :

# School Education :
+ 15,000 schools to be strengthened by implementing all NEP components.
+ 100 new Sainik Schools to be set up in partnership with NGOs/private schools/states.

# Higher Education :
+ To set up Higher Education Commission of India as an umbrella body with 4 separate vehicles for standard-setting, accreditation, regulation and funding.
+ Central University to come up in Leh for accessibility of higher education in Ladakh.

Additional Read : New Education Policy 2020

# Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes Welfare :
+ 750 Eklavya model residential schools in tribal areas.
+ Revamped Post Matric Scholarship Scheme for welfare of SCs.

# Skilling :
+ Proposed amendment to Apprenticeship Act to enhance opportunities for youth.
+ Rs. 3,000 crore for realignment of existing National Apprenticeship Training Scheme (NATS) towards post-education apprenticeship, training of graduates and diploma holders in Engineering.
+ With Japan for a collaborative Training Inter Training Programme (TITP) to transfer of skills, technique and knowledge.

V. Innovation and R&D :

+ To strengthen overall research ecosystem with focus on national-priority thrust area.
+ Promote Digital Mode of payment.
+ National Language Translation Mission (NTLM) to make governance and policy related knowledge in major Indian languages.
+ PSLV-CS51 to be launched by New Space India Limited (NSIL) carrying Brazil's Amazonia Satellite and some Indian satellites.

VI. Minimum Government, Maximum Governance :

+ National Commission for Allied Healthcare Professionals already introduced to ensure transparent and efficient regulation of the 56 allied healthcare professions.
+ The National Nursing and Midwifery Commission Bill introduced for the same in nursing profession.

Some Other Important Facts of Budget 2021-22 :

• According to Chief Economic Advisor Krishanamurthy Subramaniam, India's GDP recovery in V-shape (GDP 2019 : 4.2%, GDP 2020 :  -7% and GDP 2021 : 11%).

• First ever Digital Union Budget 2021-22 presented.

• Launched Union Budget App.

• The fiscal deficit in BE 2021-22 is estimated to be 6.8% of GDP.

• To achieving a fiscal deficit level below 4.5% of GDP by 2025-2026 with a fairly steady decline over the period by fiscal consolidation.

• The Contingency Fund of India is to be augmented from Rs. 500 crore to Rs. 30,000 crore through Finance Bill.

15th Finance Commission  recommended
+ Net borrowing for the states allowed at 4% of GSDP for the year  2021-22.
+ State expected to reach a fiscal deficit of 3% of GSDP by 2023-24.
+ The final report covering 2021-26 was sumitted to the President, retaining vertical shares of states at 41%.
+ Funds to UTs of Jammu and Kashmir and Ladakh would be provided by Centre.

• Tax Proposal :
+ Corporate tax rate slashed to make it among the lowest in the world.
+ Burden of taxation on small taxpayers eased by increasing rebates.
+ Return filers almost doubled to 6.48 crore in 2020 from 3.31 crore in 2014.
+ Faceless Assessment and Faceless Appeal introduced.

• Relief to Senior Citizens :
+ Time limit for re-opening cases reduced to 3 years from 6 years.
+ National Faceless Income Tax Appellate Tribunal Centre to be established.

• Rules to be notified for removing hardships faced by NRIs regarding their foreign retirement accounts.

• Limit of turnover for tax audit increased to Rs. 10 crore from Rs. 5 crore for entities carrying out 95% transaction digitally.

• Tax holiday for Affordable Housing projects extended till March 2022.

Capital gains exemption for investment in start-ups extended till 31st March, 2022.

Custom Duty Rationalisation : 
New custom duty exemptions to have validity up to the 31st March following two years from its issue date.

• Customs duty on cotton increased from nil to 10% and on raw silk and silk yarn from 10% to 15%.

For More Details : Ministry of Finance

Budget App

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