Daily Current Affairs 2021 Highlights of Union Budget 2021-22 | Daily Current Affairs 2021

Highlights of Union Budget 2021-22

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Presenting the Union Budget for 2021-22, Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman said that the Budget proposals for this financial year rest on six pillars — health and well-being, physical and financial capital and infrastructure, inclusive development for aspirational India, reinvigorating human capital, innovation and R&D, and ‘Minimum Government, Maximum Governance’. 

Significant announcements included a slew of hikes in customs duty to benefit Make in India, proposal to disinvest two more PSBs and a general insurance company, and numerous infrastructure pledges to poll-bound States. Fiscal deficit stands at 9.5% of the GDP, and is estimated to be 6.8% in 2021-22. Personal income tax slabs remain as is.  

Here are the highlights of this year’s budget: 

Health and Sanitation: 

A new scheme, titled PM Atma Nirbhar Swasthya Bharat Yojana, to be launched to develop primary, secondary and tertiary healthcare 

Mission POSHAN 2.0 to improve nutritional outcomes across 112 aspirational districts https://1e10d40802b58e602c1ff2b0a75ef2af.safeframe.googlesyndication.com/safeframe/1-0-37/html/container.html

Operationalisation of 17 new public health units at points of entry 

Modernising of existing health units at 32 airports, 15 seaports and land ports 

Jal Jeevan Mission Urban aimed at better water supply nationwide 

Strengthening of Urban Swachh Bharat Mission 

Education: 

100 new Sainik Schools to be set up 

750 Eklavya schools to be set up in tribal areas 

A Central University to come up in Ladakh 

Infrastructure: 

Vehicle scrapping policy to phase out old and unfit vehicles –  all vehicles to undergo fitness test in automated fitness centres every 20 years (personal vehicles), every 15 years (commercial vehicles) 

Highway and road works announced in Kerala, Tamil Nadu, West Bengal and Assam 

National Asset Monetising Pipeline launched to monitor asset monetisation process 

National Rail Plan created to bring a future ready Railway system by 2030 

100% electrification of Railways to be completed by 2023 

Metro services announced in 27 cities, plus additional allocations for Kochi Metro, Chennai Metro Phase 2, Bengaluru Metro Phase 2A and B, Nashik and Nagpur Metros 

National Hydrogen Mission to be launched to generate hydrogen from green power sources 

Recycling capacity of ports to be doubled by 2024 

Gas pipeline project to be set up in Jammu and Kashmir 

Pradhan Mantri Ujjwala Yojana (LPG scheme) to be extended to cover 1 crore more beneficiaries  

Tax

No IT filing for people above 75 years who get pension and earn interest from deposits

Reopening window for IT assessment cases reduced from 6 to 3 years. However, in case of serious tax evasion cases (Rs. 50 lakh or more), it can go up to 10 years 

Affordable housing projects to get a tax holiday for one year 

Compliance burden of small trusts whose annual receipts does not exceed Rs. 5 crore to be eased 

Duty of copper scrap reduced to 2.5% 

Custom duty on gold and silver to be rationalised 

Duty on naphtha reduced to 2.5%. 

Duty on solar inverters raised from 5% to 20%, and on solar lanterns from 5% to 15% 

All nylon products charged with 5% customs duty 

Tunnel boring machines to attract customs duty of 7% 

Customs duty on cotton raised from 0 to 10% 

Agriculture infrastructure and development cess proposed on certain items including urea, apples, crude soyabean and sunflower oil, crude palm oil, kabuli chana and peas

Economy and Finance: 

Fiscal deficit stands at 9.5% of the GDP; estimated to be 6.8% in 2021-22 

Proposal to allow States to raise borrowings up to 4% of GSDP this year 

A Unified Securities Market Code to be created, consolidating provisions of the Sebi Act, Depositories Act, and two other laws 

Proposal to increase FDI limit from 49% to 74% 

An asset reconstruction company will be set up to take over stressed loans 

Deposit insurance increased from Rs 1 lakh to Rs 5 lakh for bank depositors 

Proposal to decriminalise Limited Liability Partnership Act of 2008 

Two PSU bank and one general insurance firm to be disinvested this year 

An IPO of LIC to debut this fiscal 

Strategic sale of BPCL, IDBI Bank, Air India to be completed 

Agriculture: 

Agriculture infrastructure fund  to be made available for APMCs for augmenting their infrastructure 

1,000 more Mandis to be integrated into the E-NAM market place 

Five major fishing hubs, including Chennai, Kochi and Paradip, to be developed 

A multipurpose seaweed park to be established in Tamil Nadu 

Employment:

A portal to be launched to maintain information on gig workers and construction workers 

Social security to be extended to gig and platform workers 

Margin capital required for loans via Stand-up India scheme reduced from 25% to 15% for SCs, STs and women

Source: The Hindu

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