Interim Budget: Paving the Way for a Prosperous, Inclusive, and Developed India by 2047

The interim budget, presented against the backdrop of Viksit Bharat (Developed India) by 2047, outlines a comprehensive roadmap for the nation’s fiscal, economic, and welfare agenda. Rooted in the principles of “Sabka Saath, Sabka Vikas, Sabka Vishwas,” and driven by the “Sabka Prayas” ethos. It vividly demonstrates the government’s commitment towards achieving a harmonious, prosperous Bharat that thrives on modern infrastructure, inclusivity, and opportunities for all.

One of the key aspects of the interim budget is that it lays down a strategic framework aimed at realising the dream of a Developed India by 2047. It encapsulates a multi-dimensional approach, addressing economic growth, infrastructure development, poverty alleviation, and the empowerment of youth and women. With its comprehensive development agenda, the budget is a stepping stone towards building a prosperous Bharat in harmony with nature, characterised by modern infrastructure

The government has prioritized people-centric inclusive development. Its focus is on substantive advancements in physical, digital, and social infrastructure. The Digital Public Infrastructure (DPI) initiative stands out as a significant leap towards formalisation and financial inclusion. It also ensures deepening and widening of the tax base through GST, and through the revival in the financial sector to bring savings, credit, and investment back on track.

A proactive stance on inflation management complements the economic strides, with all regions of the country becoming active economic growth participants. This approach has been pivotal in ensuring that India’s growth trajectory remains robust. India’s GDP progress over the years has been remarkable, both in comparison to its own past performance and relative to global growth rates.

Interim Budget: Paving the Way for a Prosperous, Inclusive, and Developed India by 2047

Diminishing Poverty and Enhancing Welfare

The reduction in the multidimensional poverty headcount ratio, with 25 crore people moving out of poverty, underscores the success of welfare initiatives like Garib Kalyan. The Direct Benefit Transfer (DBT) scheme, with savings of ₹2.7 lakh crore, and the credit assistance to 78 lakh street vendors under the PM-SVANidhi scheme, shows the government’s success in uplifting the underprivileged.

The interim budget places a strong emphasis on empowering the youth. There has been a significant increase in budget allocation for PM-SHRI and the training of 1.4 crore youth under the Skill India Mission. The entrepreneurial aspirations of the youth are further supported through the sanctioning of 43 crore loans under the PM Mudra Yojana.

Women’s empowerment is another focal point. Initiatives are aimed at boosting female entrepreneurship, increasing female enrolment in higher education, and supporting women through self-help groups (SHGs) to become Lakhpati Didis. The integration of technology and educational reforms has played a role in fostering an environment where women can pursue higher education and careers in STEM fields.

Welfare of Farmers and Rural Development

The welfare of farmers, deemed “Annadata,” receives significant attention, with direct financial assistance to 11.8 crore farmers under PM-KISAN and crop insurance to 4 crore farmers under PM Fasal Bima Yojana. The integration of mandis under e-NAM supports a trading volume of ₹3 lakh crore, showcasing the government’s commitment to strengthening India’s agricultural backbone.

Strategy for Amrit Kaal: Steering Towards Sustainable and Infrastructure Development

As India embarks on the journey towards Amrit Kaal, the interim budget delineates comprehensive strategies to foster sustainable development and bolster infrastructure, ensuring the nation’s progression into a developed economy by 2047.

Sustainable Development Initiatives

  • Net Zero by 2070: The nation commits to achieving ‘Net Zero’ carbon emissions by 2070, emphasizing the transition towards renewable energy sources.
  • Renewable Energy Support: Viability gap funding for wind energy, alongside initiatives for coal gasification and liquefaction, underscores the shift to cleaner energy sources. The phased mandatory blending of CNG, PNG, and compressed biogas further exemplifies this commitment.
  • Rooftop Solarization: Aiming to enable 1 crore households to generate up to 300 units of free electricity per month, this initiative is pivotal for reducing reliance on fossil fuels.
  • E-Mobility Push: The adoption of e-buses for the public transport network and the strengthening of the e-vehicle ecosystem highlight the shift towards sustainable mobility.
  • Bio-Economy Boost: The launch of new schemes for biomanufacturing and bio-foundries will catalyze the development of environment-friendly alternatives, showcasing a significant increase in non-fossil fuel electricity capacity.

These initiatives are complemented by significant achievements in energy efficiency, including the distribution of energy-efficient appliances and the expansion of LPG connectivity under PMUY, marking strides towards a sustainable future.

Infrastructure and Investment Growth

  • Capital Expenditure: The budget reveals an upward trajectory in capital expenditure as a percentage of GDP, underscoring the government’s emphasis on bolstering the nation’s infrastructure.
  • Rail and Road Enhancements: The implementation of major railway corridor programs under PM Gati Shakti aims to enhance logistics efficiency. The expansion of national highways and the increase in cargo traffic at major ports reflect significant improvements in physical infrastructure.
  • Air and Urban Transport: The comprehensive development of airports under the UDAN scheme and the promotion of urban transformation through Metro rail projects represent critical components of the infrastructure upgrade.
  • FDI and Foreign Investment: Doubling the FDI inflow and promoting foreign investment through bilateral investment treaties are strategic moves to fund this expansive infrastructure development.

These efforts signify a robust framework designed to elevate India’s infrastructure to global standards, ensuring sustainable growth and enhancing the quality of life for its citizens.

Further, the comprehensive approach of the interim budget includes pivotal strategies for inclusive development and agricultural advancement with the aim to ensure equitable growth and enhance food security by 2047.

Inclusive Development: Empowering Communities and Enhancing Health

  • Aspirational District Programme: Aims to assist states in accelerating development, with a focus on employment generation, showcasing significant progress in health indicators and insurance enrollment.
  • Health Initiatives: Introduction of Cervical Cancer Vaccination for young girls and extension of health cover under Ayushman Bharat to include ASHA and Anganwadi workers highlight the government’s commitment to public health.
  • Nutrition and Care: The expedited rollout of Saksham Anganwadi and Poshan 2.0 programs, along with the U-WIN platform, underscores efforts to improve nutrition delivery and early childhood care.

Housing and Urban Development

  • Pradhan Mantri Awas Yojana (PMAY): Near achievement of the initial target of 3 crore houses with an additional 2 crore houses targeted for the next five years demonstrates the government’s focus on housing for all.
  • Housing for the Middle Class: The launch of a new scheme to support the middle class in acquiring their own homes further emphasizes inclusive development.
  • Tourism and Local Entrepreneurship: Encouragement of states to develop iconic tourist centers, backed by long-term interest-free loans, aims to boost tourism and create opportunities for local entrepreneurs.

Agriculture and Food Processing Enhancement

  • Post-Harvest Investments: The promotion of private and public investment in post-harvest activities is set to revolutionize the agricultural sector.
  • Atmanirbhar Oilseeds Abhiyaan: A strategy to achieve self-reliance in oilseeds production will ensure food security and reduce import dependency.
  • Dairy and Aquaculture Development: Comprehensive programmes for dairy development and the enhancement of the Pradhan Mantri Matsaya Sampada Yojana aim to increase aquaculture productivity, double exports, and generate employment.
  • Integrated Aquaparks: The establishment of 5 Integrated Aquaparks will bolster the Blue Revolution, reflecting increased allocations for sustainable and productive aquaculture practices.

Reflecting on the transformative journey of India’s fiscal landscape, the strides made through taxation reforms and the strategic allocation of resources to various ministries mark a pivotal shift towards a more inclusive, developed, India. The tripling of direct tax collections over the past decade, alongside a significant swell in the number of tax filers, underscores a growing culture of compliance and fiscal responsibility among citizens and businesses. This shift is coupled with the drastic reduction in the processing time of returns. The government’s commitment to leveraging technology for governance, enhancing efficiency, and taxpayer satisfaction has been the driving force.

The introduction of the Goods and Services Tax (GST) emerges as a landmark reform, simplifying the tax structure, doubling monthly gross collections, and fostering a positive economic ecosystem. Such fiscal prudence has translated into tangible benefits for consumers through reduced logistics costs and overall prices, demonstrating the direct impact of policy on everyday life. The buoyancy in state revenue post-GST adoption further attests to the reform’s effectiveness in enhancing economic resilience and fostering a conducive environment for growth.

Moreover, the strategic budget allocations to critical sectors such as defence, agriculture, infrastructure, and health signal a balanced approach to addressing the nation’s priorities—security, food sovereignty, modern infrastructure, and inclusive welfare. Each allocation reflects a nuanced understanding of the sector’s role in propelling the country towards its vision of Viksit Bharat by 2047.

In weaving together these threads of fiscal reform, tax efficiency, and strategic resource allocation, the narrative that emerges is one of optimism, resilience, and forward momentum. India’s fiscal journey, marked by comprehensive reforms and strategic investments, lays down a robust blueprint for sustainable growth, equitable development, and a prosperous future for all its citizens. It’s a testament to the power of visionary governance. In addition, it’s about the importance of adaptability in policy-making, and the undeniable spirit of a nation on the rise, poised to meet its ambitious goals with determination and grace.

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