Budget 2021: No changes to IT blocks, new implementation
Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman loosened the threads of the public treasury and presented an expansive budget for 2021-22 on Monday, with a boost for spending on infrastructure and care even as it sought to reduce the 2021 budget deficit by around 9.5% of GDP this year without noticeably increasing the tax burden.
- While there has been little direct relief for the sectors or sections most affected by the pandemic, the government is confident of a real GDP growth of 10% to 10.5% in the next year, relying on the multiplier effect of infrastructure spending that also hopes to achieve. stimulate demand and job creation.
- Citing Rabindranath Tagore’s aphorism, “Faith is the bird that smells of light and sings when dawn is still dark,” Sitharaman compared the budget to the successful return of the India team to the test series against Australia and said it offers all the opportunities for “our economy to accelerate and capture the pace it needs for sustainable growth.”
- She announced important reform signals for global investors, such as raising the FDI cap in the insurance sector from 49% to 74%, and an ambitious new strategic divestment policy that will begin with the sale. Two public sector banks and one general insurance company in 2021-2022.
- The budget proposes the creation of a new development finance institution to finance infrastructure projects as part of the national infrastructure portfolio, and the creation of an asset reconstruction company to take care of bad debts from public sector banks to cope with the rise in APMs.
- However, only Rs 20 billion has been allocated for bank recapitalization, which is lower than expected given the continued stress on the bank’s books after the pandemic.
- Apart from Rs 35,000 crore for the Covid-19 vaccination program, Sitharaman said that more funds will be provided if the need arises. Overall budget spending for “health and wellness,” he said, was “2.23 lakh crore rupees, representing an increase of 137% between 2020 and 2021.”
- By proposing a capital expenditure of Rs 5.54 lakh crore for the year, 34.5% more than in 2020-2021, the Minister of Finance has set a budget deficit of 6.8% of GDP as a target, with a gross market debt of around Rs. 12 lakh crore.
- Analysts said the budget’s fiscal arithmetic was perhaps the most credible in recent years, but meeting divestment and non-tax revenue targets will be key to hitting the 6.8% of GDP target.
Some highlights of the budget
- No change in personal income tax; new agricultural infringement on certain products.
- Road works were announced in Kerala, Tamil Nadu, West Bengal and Assam (all four states go to the polls this year).
- Vehicle Scrapping Policy for Disposal of Old and Unsuitable Vehicles – All vehicles must undergo a proficiency test in automated gyms every 20 years (personal vehicles), every 15 years (commercial vehicles).
- A new program, titled PM Atma Nirbhar Swasthya Bharat Yojana, will be launched to expand primary, secondary and tertiary health care.
- There is no computer deposit for people over 75 who receive a pension and earn interest on the deposits.
- The budget deficit amounts to 9.5% of GDP; estimated at 6.8% in 2021-2022.
- A unified code of the securities market will be created, consolidating the provisions of the Sebi Law, the Depositories Law and two other laws. An initial public offering of LIC to begin this exercise
- Divestment target of Rs 1.75 million lakh; The strategic sale of BPCL, IDBI Bank, Air India will be finalized.
- Margin capital required for loans through the Stand-up India program increased from 25% to 15% for SC, ST and women.
- Gas pipeline project to be installed in Jammu and Kashmir. Pradhan Mantri Ujjwala Yojana (LPG program) will be expanded to cover 1 crore of additional beneficiaries
“Cruel blow to federalism, vindictive to farmers,” says P Chidambaram
Congress leader and former Union finance minister P. Chidambaram criticized the Union budget, saying that “in the test in 10 points that we suggested on January 28, the budget fails on most points.
- This is barely over one point. FM gave a staggering figure of Rs. 223,846 crore for health, an impressive “increase” by compared to the current year’s budget estimate of Rs. 94,452 crore.
- As she had warned, it was a conjuring trick. She added the one-time cost of the vaccination (Rs. 35,000 crore) and Finance Commission grants amounting to Rs. 49,214 million.
- It also included allocations to the Department of Water and Sanitation. Deprived of these supplements, the health allocations were 72,934 rupees in 2020-2021 and 79,602 crore rupees in 2021-2022“.
- Chidamabaram also objected to the government using the provisions of the finance bill to make amendments to non-cash bill issues and said this was done to deny Rajya Sabha his right.
Twitter blocks several accounts that publish messages in support of farmers’ outcry, unblocks them after the fury
Microblogging site Twitter on Monday, citing “lawsuits”, blocked several accounts, including that of the news magazine The Caravan, l actor Sushant Singh and activists and bloggers posting messages in support of the continuing unrest among farmers. An aberration was the account of Shashi Shekhar, CEO of Prasar Bharati, India’s public service broadcaster, who was also blocked.
- The blocking of The Caravan’s official ID marked the first time in India that a media account has been blocked. Most of the blocked accounts had been unblocked at the time of publication of this newsletter.
Farmers are planning a “chakka jam” on February 6; The government is betting on iron bars to create a “wall” at the Singhu border
Farmers’ unions called for a “chakka jam” or roadblock across the country on February 6. Farmers are expected to block roads from 12:00 p.m. to 3:00 p.m. to protest the government’s refusal to comply with their demand to repeal the three farm laws, against the internet ban on protest sites, against the detention of various farmers and attempts to expel them from protest sites by force.
- Meanwhile, workers under police surveillance were seen on Monday hanging iron bars between two rows of cement barriers on the side of the main road at the Singhu border to further restrict the movement of protesting farmers, he said.
- Another part of the road at the Delhi-Haryana border is virtually blocked now that a makeshift concrete wall has been erected.
- This decision comes a few days after violent clashes between some demonstrators and the police on January 26, during the agitated parade of farmers’ tractors.
- Security personnel from the paramilitary forces, RAF and CRPF, were seen in relatively fewer numbers than in recent days, but large numbers of police have covered the mile-long stretch of the protest site.
- In addition to the makeshift road wall, a small trench was also dug earlier across an interior street slightly off the road, and concrete barricades were erected on both sides.
Aung San Suu Kyi, other leaders detained after military coup in Myanmar
The Burmese military staged a coup on Monday, arrested de facto leader Aung San Suu Kyi and said it had taken the control of the country for one year under the state of emergency.
- The intervention came after weeks of growing tension between the military, which ruled the country for nearly five decades, and the civilian government, over allegations of fraud in the November elections.
- The military signaled last week that they could take power to resolve their allegations of irregularities at the ballot box, which Suu Kyi’s National League for Democracy (NLD) party easily won.
- Suu Kyi and President Win Myint were arrested in the capital, Naypyidaw, before dawn Monday. NLD spokesman Myo Nyunt told AFP just hours before Parliament resumed for the first time since the elections.
- The events prompted a swift response from the United States and Australia, both calling for the release of detained NLD leaders and the restoration of democracy.
- India expressed “deep concern” over reports of an ongoing military coup in Myanmar. “We have watched the events in Myanmar with deep concern. India has consistently supported Myanmar’s democratic transition process. We believe that the rule of law and the democratic process must be respected. We are monitoring the situation closely, ”said a press release from the Department of Foreign Relations.
Covid Watch: The number of reported coronavirus cases in India was 10,764,452 at the time of this newsletter, with a death toll of 1,54,511.
BCCI and the Tamil Nadu Cricket Association have decided to allow 50% of the spectators to attend the second India-England event to be held at the M.A. Chidambaram, a senior TNCA official told PTI on Monday.
- The move was authorized during a meeting between TNCA and BCCI officials. The first test begins on Friday while the second game begins on February 13. The crowds have already been cleared for the third and fourth tests.