04 February, 2017

Highlights of Union Budget 2017-18

The 2017 Union Budget, presented by Finance Minister Arun Jaitley on 01st February 2017, was broadly focused on 10 issues farming sector, rural population, youth, poor and health care for the underprivileged, infrastructure, financial sector for stronger institutions, speedy accountability, public services, prudent fiscal management and tax administration for the honest.

Following are the highlights of his speech on various issues:

Demonetisation

1. Demonetisation is expected to have a transient impact on the economy.

2. It will have a great impact on the economy and lives of people .

3. Demonetisation is a bold and decisive measure that will lead to higher GDP growth.

4. The effects of demonetisation will not spillover to the next fiscal.

Agriculture sector

1. Sowing farmers should feel secure against natural calamities.

2. A sum of Rs. 10 lakh crore is allocated as credit to farmers, with 60 days interest waiver.

3. NABARD fund will be increased to Rs. 40,000 crore. 

4. Government will set up mini labs in Krishi Vigyan Kendras for soil testing.

5. A dedicated micro irrigation fund will be set up for NABARD with Rs 5,000 crore initial corpus.

6. Irrigation corpus increased from Rs 20,000 crore to Rs 40,000 crore.

7. Dairy processing infrastructure fund wlll be initially created with a corpus of Rs. 2000 crore.

8. Issuance of soil cards has gained momentum.

9. A model law on contract farming will be prepared and shared with the States.

Rural population

1. The government targets to bring 1 crore households out of poverty by 2019.

2. During 2017-18, five lakh farm ponds will be be taken up under the MGNREGA.

3. Over Rs 3 lakh crore will be spent for rural India. MGNREGA to double farmers' income.

4. Will take steps to ensure participation of women in MGNREGA up to 55%.

5. Space technology will be used in a big way to ensure MGNREGA works.

6. The government proposes to complete 1 crore houses for those without homes.

7. Will allocate Rs. 19,000 crore for Pradhan Mantri Gram Sadak Yojana in 2017-18.

8. The country well on way to achieve 100% rural electrification by March 2018.

9. Swachh Bharat mission has made tremendous progress; sanitation coverage has gone up from 42% in Oct 13 to 60% now.

For youth

1. Will introduce a system of measuring annual learning outcomes and come out with an innovation fund for secondary education.

2. Focus will be on 3,479 educationally-backward blocks.

3. Colleges will be identified based on accreditation.

4. Skill India mission was launched to maximise potential. Will set up 100 India International centres across the country.

5. Courses on foreign languages will be introduced.

6. Will take steps to create 5000 PG seats per annum.

For the poor and health care

1. Rs. 500 crore allocated for Mahila Shakthi Kendras.

2. Under a nationwide scheme for pregnant women, Rs. 6000 will be transferred to each person.

3. A sum of Rs. 1,84,632  crore allocated for women and children.

4. Affordable housing will be given infrastructure status.

5. Owing to surplus liquidity, banks have started reducing lending rates for housing.

6. Elimination of tuberculosis by 2025 targeted.

7. Health sub centres, numbering 1.5 lakh, willl be transformed into health wellness centres.

8. Two AIIMS will be set up in Jharkhand and Gujarat.

9. Will undertake structural transformation of the regulator framework for medical education.

10. Allocation for Scheduled Castes  is Rs. 52,393  crore

11. Aadhaar-based smartcards will be issued to senior citizens to monitor health.

Infrastructure; Railways

1. A total allocation of Rs. 39,61,354 crore has been made.

2. Total allocation for Railways is Rs. 1,31,000 crore.

3. No service charge on tickets booked through IRCTC.

4. Raksha coach with a corpus of Rs. 1 lakh crore for five years (for passenger safety).

5. Unmanned level crossings will be eliminated by 2020.

6. 3,500 km of railway lines to be commissioned this year up from 2,800 km last year.

7. SMS-based ''clean my coach service'' is put in place.

8. Coach mitra facility will be introduced to register all coach related complaints.

9. By 2019 all trains will have bio-toilets.

10. Five-hundred stations will be made differently-abled friendly.

11. Railways to partner with logistics players for front-end and back-end solutions for select commodities.

12. Railways will offer competitive ticket booking facility

13. Rs. 64,000 crore allocated for highways. 

14. High speed Internet to be allocated to 1,50,000 gram panchayats

15. New Metro rail policy will be announced with new modes of financing

Energy Sector

1. A strategic policy for crude reserves will be set up

2. Rs. 1.26,000 cr for energy production-based investments received

3. Trade infra export scheme will be launched 2017-18.

Financial Sector

1. FDI policy reforms - more than 90% of FDI inflows are now automated.

2. Shares of Railway PSE like IRCTC would be listed on stock exchanges. 

3. Bill on resolution of financial firms to be introduced in this session of parliament.

4. Decided to abolish FIPB in 2017-18.

5. Foreign Investment Promotion Board to be abolished.

6. Revised mechanism to ensure time bound listing of CPSEs

7. Computer emergency response team for financial sector to be formed.

8. Pradhan Mantri Mudra Yojana lending target at Rs 2.44 lakh crore for 2017-18

9. Digital India - Bhim app will unleash mobile phone revolution - two new schemes to promote the app.

10. Govt to introduce two new schemes to promote BHIM App - referral bonus for users and cash back for traders: FM.

11. Negotiable Instruments Act might be amended.

12. DBT to LPG consumers , Chandigarh is kerosene free, 84 govt schemes are on the DBT platform.

13. Head post office as the central office for rendering passport services

14. Easy online booking system for Army, defence personnel

15. For big-time offences - including economic offenders fleeing India, the govt. will introduce a legislative change or new law to confiscate the assets of these people within the country.

Fiscal Situation

1. Total expenditure - Rs. 21, 47,000 crore

2. Abolition on plan, non-plan expenditure, focus on capital expenditure ( Capital expenditure will be 25.4 per cent)

3. Rs. 3,000 crore under Dept of Economic Affairs for implementing Budget announcements.

4. Defence expenditure, excluding pension, at Rs 2,74,114  crore

5. Expenditure in science and technology —  Rs. 37,435 crore

6. Total resources transferred to States and UTs is Rs 4.11 lakh crore

7. Recommended 3% fiscal deficit for three years with deviation of 0.5% of GDP.

8. Revenue deficit - 1.9 %

9. Pegged fiscal deficit of 2017-18 at 3.2% of GDP and remain committed to achieving 3% in the next year.

On funding of political parties

1. Maximum amount of cash donation for political parties will be Rs 2,000 from any one source from Rs 20,000

2. Political parties will be entitled to receive donations by cheque or digital mode from donors.

3. Amendment is being proposed to RBI Act to enable issuance of electoral bonds that government will scheme. Donor can 4. purchase these bonds from banks or post office via cheque or digital transactions. They can be redeemed only by registered political parties.

Tax proposals

1. Proportion of direct tax to indirect tax is not optimal.

2. 1.95 crore individuals showed income between Rs 2.5 lakh to Rs 5 lakh.

3. Out of 76 lakh individual assessees declaring income more than Rs 5 lakh, 56 lakh are salaried.

4. Only 1.72 lakh people showed income of more than Rs 50 lakh a year.

5. Between Nov 8 to Dec 30: Deposits between Rs 2 lakh and Rs 80 lakh was made in 1.09 crore accounts.

6. Net tax revenue of 2013-14 was Rs 11.38 lakh crore.

7. Out of 76 lakh individual assessees declaring income more than Rs 5 lakh, 56 lakh are salaried.

8. 1.95 crore individuals showed income between Rs 2.5 lakh to Rs 5 lakh.

9. Rate of growth of advance tax in Personal I-T is 34.8% in last three quarters of this financial year.

10. Holding period for long term capital gain lowered to 2 years

11. Propose to have carry-forward of MAT for 15 years.

12. Capital gains tax to be exempted for persons holding land from which land was pooled for creation of state capital of Telangana.

13. Corporate tax: In order to make MSME companies more viable, propose to reduce tax for small companies of turnover of up to 16. Rs 50 crore to 25%. About 67 lakh companies fall in this category. 96% of companies to get this benefit.

14. Propose to reduce basic customs duty for LNG to 2.5% from 5%

15. SIT on black money suggested no cash transactions of more than Rs 3 lakh. Govt has accepted this proposal.

16. Income Tax Act to be amended.  No transaction above Rs 3 lakh to be permitted in cash.

17. Limit of cash donation by charitable trust reduced to Rs 2,000 from Rs 10,000.

18. Net revenue loss in direct tax could be Rs. 20,000 crore.

19. India’s tax to GDP ratio is not favourable.

20. Out of 13.14 lakh registered companies, only 5.97 lakh companies have filed returns for 2016-17.

Personal income tax

1. Existing rate of tax for individuals between Rs.  2.5- Rs 5 lakh reduced to 5% from 10%

2. All other categories of tax payers in subsequent brackets will get benefit of Rs 12,500.

3. Simple one page return for people with annual income of Rs. 5 lakh other than business income.

4. People filing I-T returns for the first time will not come under govt. scrutiny5. 

5. 10% surcharge on individual income above Rs. 50 lakh and up to Rs 1 crore to make up for Rs 15,000 crore loss due to  cut in personal I-T rate. 15 surcharge on individual income above Rs. 1 crore to remain.

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