Wednesday, 12 December, 2018

Budget will strengthen New India: Modi

Budget will strengthen New India: Modi Budget will strengthen New India: Modi
Nellie Chapman | 03 February, 2018, 19:25

"This will be the world's largest government-funded healthcare programme". The idea is to enable everyone to fly, including the common citizens of the nation.

Addressing a press conference here a day after the presentation of the Union Budget by Finance Minister Arun Jaitley, Mr Nadda said, "The Namocare covered all the components of healthcare including primary, secondary and tertiary".

10,000-crore outlay for the expansion of telecom infrastructure. If the hike had been 150 per cent, it should have been Rs 1,805.

Farmers have been in distress due to unseasonal rains and falling incomes. But, there was no announcement regarding farmer loans. An allotment of Rs 600 for TB patients every month would not be sufficient, feel many. This deduction is Rs 8000 crore. The government proposes to launch an "Operation Greens" on the lines of "Operation Flood". The scale of this scheme is unparalleled and it will bring a paradigm shift in our health sector. This will lead to higher investments in research and related infrastructure in premier educational institutions, including health institutions. Eklavya Schools will be started across the country for the welfare of ST students.

What was more exciting to me in the budget was the intent shown to acknowledge and assimilate the new waves in digital world.

The Government substantially increased the allocation of National Rural Livelihood Mission to Rs 5750 crore in 2018-19. That is not directly addressed in the budget except the railway university. He set disinvestment target of Rs.80,000 crore for 2018-19. However, for transport expenses, no bill is required to be produced. However, other medical reimbursements in case of hospitalisation will continue. This has now been subsumed into the new Standard Deduction of Rs 40,000 which may mean very little benefit in tax saving considering that health and education cess has gone up.

The middle-class salaried section's grouse about not getting a higher tax rebate can be tempered with a slew of measures undertaken by the government: An income of up to Rs 2.9 lakh is now tax-free. But both industry and the government believe it will add more jobs and reflect a shift in the government's policy from job security to job creation.

"We have made many positive changes in personal income tax rates in the past years, so no change in Income Tax slabs this year", Jaitley said in his budget speech.

Capital gains exceeding Rs 1 lakh from shares held for more than a year will be taxed at 10 per cent.

In a protectionist move aimed at boosting India-made goods and encouraging companies to manufacture in India, he announced an increase from 15 percent to 20 percent in customs duty on mobile phones and a rate of 15 percent for televisions.

As many as 24 State-run companies including privatisation of Air India has begun and more exchange-traded fund offers including debt ETFs will come.

"Indian economy is now Dollars 2.5 trillion - seventh largest in the world".

Economic growth was picking up and firmly on way to achieving 8 per cent-plus growth soon. Education and healthcare hardly ever get a mention in this annual ritual, so I'm happy the announced schemes stand much beyond the usual meddling in IITs/IIMs or gleaming over statistics of annual vaccination drives.

Carrying forward the same rationale, the government has chose to introduce long-term capital gains tax on all investments in stocks and equity-oriented mutual funds, on which a profit of more than Rs 1 lakh made over a period of one year or more would be subjected to 10 per cent tax for now.

To harness the benefits of emerging technologies, especially the fifth generation technology, the Department of Telecom would support the establishment of indigenous 5G centres, together with the IIT-Madras, he said.

"We had expected the government to use this budget for easing out return filing and other processes under GST".