Presenting the last budget of the Narendra Modi government, acting Finance Minister Piyush Goyal said that the NDA government has removed the ‘policy paralysis’ plaguing the country. He said India is back on track and the country is heading towards growth a prosperity.
Here are key takeaways from Goyal’s speech:
1: The mega tax announcement will benefit three crore middle class taxpayers. “Individual taxpayers having annual income upto Rs 5 lakhs will get full tax rebate. Individuals with gross income up to 6.5 lakh rupees will not need to pay any tax if they make investments in provident funds and prescribed equities,” Goyal said.
2: Amid growing concerns over farm stress, the Finance Minister announced the ‘Kisan Samman Nidhi’ under which Rs 6,000 will be credited to the accounts every year for the farmers holding 2 hectares of land. This initiative will benefit 12 crore small and marginal farmers, at an estimated cost of Rs 75,000 crore.
3: In the election year, Goyal’s Interim Budget is billed as extremely populist in nature. Apart from the farmers, another major winner in the Interim Budget are the cows! Goyal announced ‘Rashtriya Gokul Mission’, with an increased allocation of Rs 750 crore in current year.
4: The Interim Budget is seen as the way to gain the decisive mandate in the Lok Sabha Elections so that the NDA government can continue structured reforms. Presenting the budget for 2019-20 in the Lok Sabha, Goyal said, "We are moving towards realising New India by 2022."
5: The Finance Minister announced 8 crore free LPG connections under the Ujjwala Yojana. "We have got decisive mandate to continue structured reforms. We have reversed policy paralysis," he added.
6: Another big announcement was the hike in gratuity limit. The gratuity limit has been increased from Rs 10 lakh to Rs 30 lakh crore.
7: Goyal also announced Rs 500-crore mega pension plan. Under the scheme, monthly pension of Rs 3,000 will be paid to after retirement.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi-led government's sixth and final budget before the polls due by May is an interim budget or a 'Vote on Account'.
Goyal stepped in as interim finance minister after Arun Jaitley had to fly to New York for medical treatment. Goyal began the interim budget speech by wishing Union Minister Arun Jaitley speedy recovery and good health. Earlier, the Cabinet had approved the Interim Budget for 2019-20.