All villages to be electrified by 2018: Jaitley | Current Affairs, Current Affairs 2017

All villages to be electrified by 2018: Jaitley

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Union Budget Highlights 2017-18

Finance Minister Arun Jaitley on Wednesday said the 2017-18 budget was one of its kind where every taxpayer was liable to pay reduced taxes.

“It is the first budget in which every taxpayer has reduced tax liability. While the tax liability of people with incomes of up to Rs 500,000 is proposed to be reduced by half, all other categories of taxpayers in the subsequent slabs will also get a uniform benefit of Rs 12,500 per person,” Jaitley told DD News in an interview.

Union Budget Highlights 2017-18

In a relief to the middle class, Jaitley proposed in the budget to halve the income tax to 5 per cent for those earning between Rs 250,000 and Rs 500,000 per annum.

“This will reduce the tax liability of all persons with incomes below Rs 500,000 either to zero (with rebate) or 50 per cent of their existing liability. It has been done to widen the taxpayer base in the lower slab to bring the non-filers into the tax net,” he said.

Jaitley said the reduction in the income tax for smaller companies was necessary after demonetisation as they were the major job creators.

“Post-demonetisation, I had a promise to keep to help the micro, small and medium enterprises (MSMEs) sector. MSMEs are the job creators,” he said.

In order to make MSME companies more viable and also to encourage firms to migrate to the company format, the budget proposed to reduce the income tax on smaller companies with annual turnovers of up to Rs 50 crore to 25 per cent.

As per the data of Assessment Year 2015-16, there are 6.94 lakh companies filing returns, of which 6.67 lakh fall in this category and, therefore, percentage-wise 96 per cent of companies will get this benefit of lower taxation.

“This will make our MSME sector more competitive compared with large companies. The estimated revenue forgo vis-a-vis this measure is expected to be Rs 7,200 crore per annum,” Jaitley said in his speech.

Union Budget 2017-18 Highlights:

  • Five special tourism zones, anchored on SPVs, to be set up; Incredible India II campaign to be launched across the world
  • Expert international assistance will be harnessed to improve railway safety preparedness and maintenance practices
  • Allocation for infrastructure at record Rs 3,96,135 crore in 2017-18
  • National Testing Agency to be established to conduct all entrance exams for higher education
  • Innovation Fund for secondary education to be created
  • Pradhan Mantri Kaushal Kendras to be extended to more than 600 districts across the country
  • Mahila Shakti Kendras to be set up at village level, in 14 lakh ICDS centres, with an allocation of Rs. 500 crore
  • Net tax revenue grew by 17 per cent in 2015-16
  • Committed to making taxation rate reasonable, our tax administration more fair and expand the tax base of the country
  • Pradhan Mantri Mudra Yojana lending target has been doubled at Rs 2.44 lakh crore for 2017-18
  • 3,500 km railway lines to be commissioned in 2017-18 against 2,800 km in 2016-17
  • Railways plan size for 2017-18 pegged at Rs. 1,31,000 crore, including Rs 55,000 crore to be provided by the government
  • Using space technology in a big way to plan MGNREGA works
  • During 2017-18, another 5 lakh ponds to be constructed for drought-proofing
  • AadharPay, a merchant version of Aadhaar-enabled payment system to be launched shortly for those without debit cards, mobile phones
  • Sanitation coverage in rural areas has gone up to 60 per cent
  • Swachh Bharat Mission has made tremendous progress in promoting safe sanitation and ending open defectation
  • By 2019 all passenger coaches of railways to be fitted with bio-toilets
  • 1 crore houses to be completed by 2019 for houseless and those living in ‘kacha’ houses
  • Rs 19,000 crore in 2017-18 for PMGSY; together with contribution from states, Rs 27,000 crore to be spent
  • Total allocation for rural, agricultural & allied sectors for 2017-18 is a record Rs 1,87,223 crore, up 24 per cent from last year
  • Target for agricultural credit in 2017-18 has been fixed at a record Rs 10 lakh crore
  • Coverage of Fasal Bima Yojana to go up from 30 per cent of cropped area, to 40 per cent in 2017-18, 50 per cent in 2018-19
  • NABARD to set up dedicated micro-irrigation fund to be set to achieve Per Drop More Crop mission
  • Corpus of NABARD’s long-term irrigation fund raised to Rs 40,000 crore
  • Mini soil-testing labs in Krishi Vigyan Kendras to ensure 100 per cent coverage
  • Highest ever allocation to MGNREGA at Rs 48,000 crore
  • Merger of Railway Budget with Budget 2017 a historic step
  • Transform, Energize and Clean India – #TECIndia – our agenda for the next year
  • Advancement of budget will enable all ministries, departments to operationalize all schemes right from beginning of next fiscal
  • Demonetisation aims to create a new normal, where the GDP would be bigger, cleaner and real
  • Effects of demonetisation not expected to spill over to next year
  • Firmly believe that GST, Demonetisation, built on JAM, will have an epoch-making impact on the lives of our people
  • Demonetisation aims to create a new normal, where the GDP would be bigger, cleaner and real
  • Recalls #MahatmaGandhi’s words: A right cause never fails
  • 3 challenges in current global scenario:Monetary stance of US FED Reserve, Commodity prices specially crude oil & retreat from globalisation
  • We have moved from a discretionary administration to a policy-based administration
  • Expectations included burning issues like inflation and price rise, issue of corruption & crony capitalism
  • Our government was elected amidst huge expectations of people, the underlying theme of expectations being good governance
  • Hope to resolve all issues regarding GST via consultations
  • We are moving from informal to formal economy & the Government is now seen as a trusted custodian of public money

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