Union Budget 2019 was announced recently by the Finance Minister Mrs. Nirmala Sitharaman. Announcements made in the budget set the tone for economic progress in the country. These announcements have a significant impact on each citizen and also become the source of Current Affairs questions asked in Competitive Exams.
Vidya Guru, the Institute for the Best Bank PO Coaching in Delhi & NCR, has analyzed the current budget and prepared a ready reckoner on the highlights to be kept in mind.
Union Budget 2019-Highlights
(A) Welfare Schemes
- Pradhan Mantri Karam Yogi Maandhan Scheme: Pension after the age of sixty for small shopkeepers, retail traders and self employed individuals with a turnover of lower than Rs. 1.5 crore annually.
- Pradhan Mantri Shram Yogi Maandhan Scheme: Rs. 3000 monthly pension after the age of sixty for workers in informal and unorganized sectors.
- Around 35 crore LED bulbs given away under UJALA (Unnat Jyoti by Affordable LEDs for All) scheme.
- More than 2 crore rural Indians have been made digitally literate under PMGDISHA (Pradhan Mantri Gramin Digital Saksharta Abhiyan). In order to bridge the rural-urban divide internet connectivity to be made available to local bodies in all Panchayats under Bharat-Net.
- Traditional industries to be made more profitable, productive and capable of employment generation under SFURTI (Scheme of Fund for Upgradation and Regeneration of Traditional Industries).
- 75,000 entrepreneurs to be trained in agriculture-rural industry practices under ASPIRE (A Scheme for Promotion of Innovation, Rural Industry and Entrepreneurship). Technology Business Incubators and Livelihood Business Incubators to be also set up under ASPIRE.
- FAME (Faster Adoption & Manufacturing of Hybrid and Electric Vehicles) scheme to incentivize registered and advanced battery-operated e-vehicles.
- Piped water, Har Ghar Jal, to be made available to all households under Jal Jeevan Mission by 2024.
- Agricultural productivity to be boosted through Zero Budget Farming. Zero Budget farming is the practice of financing the main crop by the earnings generated from the intercrop. Natural sources of enhancing soil fertility such as cow dung and urine are used in place of fertilizers.
- Target of achieving Open Defecation Free (ODF) India under Swachh Bharat by 2nd October, 2019. In this context, Rashtriya Swachhta Kendra will be inaugurated at Rajghat in New Delhi.
- UDAY (Ujwal DISCOM Assurance Yojana) for efficiency improvement of State owned Power Distribution Companies (DISCOMs) to do away with cross subsidy surcharges and undesirable levies on captive generation or open access sale for bulk power and industrial customers.
- Robust management framework for fisheries to be set up under PMMSY (Pradhan Mantri Matsya Sampada Yojana).
- Rs. 400 crore earmarked in the fiscal year 2019-20 for “World Class Institutions”.
- The ‘Stand Up India’ Scheme has been extended up to the year 2025. Demand based businesses will receive financial assistance from banks under this scheme.
- Naari Tu Narayani approach to create a shift towards women-led movements and initiatives from women-centric-policy making. One woman per Self Help Group (SHG) will be eligible for up to Rs. 1 lakh loan under MUDRA (Micro Units Development and Refinance Agency) scheme.
(B) Direct Taxes
- Corporate Tax reduced to 25% for firms having an annual turnover of up to Rs. 400 crore.
- Surcharge enhanced by 3% for individuals with an annual income between Rs. 2 crore and Rs. 5 crore.
- Surcharge enhanced by 7% for individuals with an annual income of more than Rs. 5 crore.
(C) Important Announcements
- Dollar 3 Trillion target for Indian economy for fiscal year 2019-20.
- Disinvestment target of Rs. 1.05 lakh crore for fiscal year 2019-20.
- No MDR (Merchant Discount Rate) charges for firms with an annual turnover of over Rs. 50 crores.
- RBI to regulate and supervise Housing Finance Companies (HFCs).
- 100% Foreign Direct Investment approved in insurance intermediaries.
- TDS of 2% will be levied on cash withdrawal of over Rs. 1 crore from a single bank account in a year.
- Credit Guarantee Enhancement Corporation will be set up for developing sources of capital for infrastructure financing.
- National Sports Education Board is going to be established under Khelo India program for development of sportspersons.
- Service sector contributed 54.3% in India’s GVA (Gross Value Added) in fiscal year 2018-19.
- Social stock exchange to be set up for capital sourcing by voluntary organizations and social enterprises.
- ‘Study in India’ program to be launched for attracting foreign students to come to India for higher education.
- Fiscal deficit pegged at 3.4% of GDP in fiscal year 2018-19.
- GDP grew at a rate of 6.8% in fiscal year 2018-19.
- Investment of Rs. 50 lakh crore required for Railway Infrastructure during the 2018-2030 period.
- Current Account Deficit pegged at 2.1% of GDP in 2018-19.
- Threshold for minimum public shareholding to be raised from 25% to 35% in companies listed on stock exchange.
- India’s economy is the 3rd largest in the world in terms of Purchasing Power Parity (PPP).
- India’s economy is currently the 6th largest in the world.
- Government is going to offer investment options in ETFs (Exchange Traded Funds) on the lines of ELSS (Equity Linked Savings Scheme).
- Rs. 70,000 crore allocated for recapitalisation of public sector banks.
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