Finance Minister Nirmala Sitaraman today presented a `robust anti-pandemic’ budget for 2021-22 fiscal with focus on poll bound Bengal ,Kerala,Tamilnadu and Assam. The budget aimed at boosting the economy basing it on six reviving pillars – health, wellness, physical and financial capital, infrastructure and R&D and inclusive development. She said that the object is to attain sustainable growth that will infuse new life into the economy through maximum governance and minimum government. The budget provided a 137 per cent rise in health care spending (Rs 2.2 lakh crore). Capital expenditure was increased by 34 per cent (Rs 5.54 lakh crore).
Alongside the FM expanded the national infrastructure pipeline and provided huge credit to the farming community. She assured the farmers of continuing procurements under MSP. FDI in insurance sector is increased to 74 per cent from 49 per cent. Around Rs 20,000 crore will be infused into PSBs for recapitalisation in 2021-22. She also reduced interest on home loans by extending it until 31 March 2022.
It took head on the dual challenge of confronting the unforeseen recession that had hit the $ 2 trillion Indian economy while ensuring maximum efforts towards resource building. The sensex surged by over 2000 points and nifty by over 600 points on the impact of the forward-looking budget. While compressors for refrigerators and AC s, LED lamps, raw silk and cotton, solar inverters and lanterns, automobile parts like windscreens, toughened glass, mobile phone chargers, mobile phone parts, PCBs, camera module and connectors have become dearer along with leather products and nylon fibre and yarn, gold, silver, precious metals and medical devices imported by international organisations and diplomatic missions have become cheaper.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi called the budget ‘Atmanirbhar’. Financial analysts and experts felt that the budget was a healthy exercise to rebuild and revive an economy devastated by Covid 19 pandemic. Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee, currently facing stiff competition from BJP and exodus within her own party in the upcoming 2021 Bengal polls dubbed it as `hypocrite government’s fake budget’. Following her the state finance minister Amit Mitra also said `it is a sell all budget’ as there are provisions for disinvestment of public sector undertakings and selling off of government shares to collect revenues of around Rs 1.87 lakh crore. He said, `the rich are becoming richer and the poor poorer. The middle class is the most neglected’
Attired like a Bengali lady and Gurudev Rabindranath Tagore’s poem on lips she announced a separate provision of Rs 25,000 crore for building of Bengal’s roads. She set aside Rs 1.03 lakh crore for Tamil Nadu, Rs 65,000 crore for Kerala and Rs 34,000 crore for Assam. A plethora of development programmes and provisions were made in the budget to turn the economy around. There were no big tax announcements. The FM announced a reprieve for pensioners above the age of 75 who no longer will need to file tax returns. Sitaraman said, “ we prepared the budget in unprecedented conditions.’’
This news article is prepared or accomplished by Nirmalya Mukherjee in his personal capacity. The opinions expressed in this article are the author’s own and do not reflect the view of kolkatatoday.com