Budget 2021: Focus on Health & Farmers, relief for seniors above 75

budget aims at developing adequate rail infra by 2030 to cater to the projected traffic requirements up to 2050

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Key takeaways from the union budget 2021-22

Rs 35,000 cr for Covid vaccine
Rs20,000 cr for recap of public sector banks
One-year tax holiday for affordable housing projects
Tax exemption for notified rental housing projects
New economic corridors to boost road infrastructure
Disinvestment Policy approved: Bare minimum CPSEs to be retained and the rest will be privatised
Pre-filling of returns will also cover capital gains from listed securities, dividend, interest income from PO, banks
Additional deduction of Rs1.5 lakh shall be available for loans taken up till March 31, 2022, for purchase of affordable house
Defence: 19% hike in capital outlay amid LAC standoff
Agriculture Infrastructure and Development Cess on small number of items
NRIs will be able to float one-person companies
Govt to amend law to ensure depositors of troubled banks can withdraw up to Rs5 lakh
Seven mega textile parks to be launched in three years
Serious tax offences of concealment of income of over Rs50 lakh can be reopened after 10 years
Exemption from tax audit limit doubled to Rs10 crore turnover for companies doing most of their business through digital modes

National Rail Plan

Aims at developing adequate rail infra by 2030 to cater to the projected traffic requirements up to 2050
The objective is to increase the modal share of rail in freight from the current level of 27% to 45%

Bahi khata paves way for tablet

For the first time, the Budget went paperless and MPs were provided soft copies of Finance Minister’s speech and documents. The FM continued with the practice of carrying the red-coloured bahi khata, only that this time round the tablet replaced papers in the red bag. Her 107-minute speech was shorter compared to 160 minutes in 2020, which had to be cut short after the minister felt unwell. PTI

36% more for Tribal Ministry

The government has set aside Rs7,524 cr for the Ministry of Tribal Affairs in the Union Budget for 2021-22, an increase of 36% over the last fiscal year. A sum of Rs7,411 crore was allocated to the ministry in 2020-21, which was later revised to Rs5,508 crore. Tribal Affairs Minister Arjun Munda said it was the “best budget so far”, as it was prepared under unprecedented circumstances. PTI

Tourism Ministry funding slashed by 19%

The budgetary allocation for the Ministry of Tourism has been slashed from Rs2,500 crore in 2020-21 to Rs2,026.77 crore this year, in a blow to the tourism industry which is reeling from huge losses due to the Covid crisis. With the coronavirus crisis restricting not just foreign tourist footfalls into the country but also keeping domestic tourists at bay, the budget has focused on pushing funds for promotion and publicity to help woo tourists back. Out of the Rs668.72 crore allocated towards promotion and publicity, Rs524.02 crore is for the overseas market and Rs144.70 crore has been kept for domestic tourists. PTI

Ujjwala scheme to cover 1 crore more

The government said the Ujjwala scheme, which provides free cooking gas LPG, will be extended to one crore more beneficiaries. The FM said city gas distribution network of providing CNG to automobiles and piped cooking gas to households will be expanded to 100 more districts. She also announced a transport system operator for regulating common carrier capacity in gas pipelines to boost gas-based economy. pti

Framework to choose power service provider

The government will soon put in place a framework to allow electricity consumers choose service providers or discoms. “Discoms are monopolies. There is a need to provide a choice to customers to choose service provider (distribution company). A framework will be put in place to provide an alternative,” said Sitharaman in her Budget speech in the Lok Sabha. At present, a large number of discoms across the country are state-owned and are unable to ensure 24-hour ‘power for all’, as envisaged by the government, because they are cash strapped.

The Union Budget for 2021-22 has not enthused the common man who feels that prices will rise, as per the IANS C-Voter Budget Insta Poll. The poll included a sample size of 1,200 people selected randomly. Forty-five per cent of the respondents said they were not satisfied with the Budget, while 35.8 per cent said they are satisfied with it.

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