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Sitharaman presents Rs 47.66 lakh Cr Budget, 6 pc higher than FY24

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Rs 10,000 Cr budgeted for rooftop solar scheme

STATE TIMES NEWS

NEW DELHI: The size of Budget 2024-25 has increased 6.1 per cent to Rs 47.66 lakh crore because of rise in expenditure and higher allocation for capital expenditure and social sector schemes.
“The Revised Estimate of the total receipts other than borrowings is Rs 27.56 lakh crore, of which tax receipts are Rs 23.24 lakh crore. The Revised Estimate of the total expenditure is Rs 44.90 lakh crore,” Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman said while presenting the interim Budget in the Lok Sabha on Thursday.
The revenue receipts at Rs 30.03 lakh crore are expected to be higher than the Budget Estimate, reflecting strong growth momentum and formalisation in the economy, she said.
The Revised Estimate of the fiscal deficit is 5.8 per cent of the Gross Domestic Product (GDP), improving on the Budget Estimate, notwithstanding moderation in the nominal growth estimates.
The nominal GDP growth for the next financial year has been pegged at 10.5 per cent against the 11 per cent estimated earlier.
The nominal GDP for 2024-25 BE has been projected at Rs 3,27,71,808 crore, assuming 10.5 per cent growth over the estimated nominal GDP of Rs 2,96,57,745 crore, as per the First Advance Estimates of 2023-24. “Coming to 2024-25, the total receipts other than borrowings and the total expenditure are estimated at Rs 30.80 lakh crore and Rs 47.66 lakh crore, respectively. The tax receipts are estimated at Rs 26.02 lakh crore,” she said.
Stressing that the impact of all-round development is discernible in all sectors, she said, “There is macro-economic stability, including in the external sector. Investments are robust. The economy is doing well.”
People are living better and earning better, with even greater aspirations for the future, she said, adding that average real income of people has increased 50 per cent.
“Inflation is moderate. People are getting empowered, equipped and enabled to pursue their aspirations. There is effective and timely delivery of programmes and of large projects,” she said.
Finance Minister said Pradhanmantri Suryodaya Yojana will enable one crore families to get up to 300 units of free electricity monthly and help them save up to Rs 18,000 annually.
“There is provision of Rs 10,000 crore for rooftop solar (scheme) in the Budget,” said Finance Secretary T V Somanathan in press conference on Budget later in the day.
Earlier in the day Sitharaman in her interim Budget speech said through rooftop solarisation, one crore households will be enabled to obtain up to 300 units of free electricity each month.
This scheme follows the resolve of the Prime Minister on the historic day of consecration of the Ram Mandir in Ayodhya, she said.
Talking about the benefits, she informed the House that there will be “savings up to Rs 15,000-18,000 annually for households from free solar electricity and selling the surplus to the distribution companies”.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi had announced the ‘Pradhanmantri Suryodaya Yojana’ with the target of installing rooftop solar earlier in January.
“I have taken my first decision after returning from Ayodhya that our government will launch ‘Pradhan Mantri Suryoday Yojna’ with the aim to install rooftop solar systems in one crore houses,” Modi had said on X.
The scheme will also aid charging of electric vehicles; entrepreneurship opportunities for a large number of vendors for supply and installation and employment opportunities for the youth with technical skills in manufacturing, installation, and maintenance.
Talking about India’s commitment for “net-zero” by 2070, she announced a Viability Gap Funding (VGF) for harnessing offshore wind energy.
“VGF will be provided for harnessing offshore wind energy potential for initial capacity of 1 GW,” she said.
According to the Central Electricity Authority data, India has a solar energy-installed generation capacity of over 73 GW.
Similarly, the data showed that wind energy capacity in the country stood around 45 GW while large hydro (over 25 MW capacity each) is 47 GW.
The biomass power/cogen capacity about 10 GW and that of small hydro (up to 25 MW) is around 5 GW, while the waste-to-energy capacity stood at 583 MW.
India has set a target of having 500 GW of renewable energy by 2030 and have 50 per cent of installed power generation capacity from non-fossil fuel sources.
President Droupadi Murmu on Wednesday said in her joint address to the Members of Parliament that in 10 years, non-fossil fuel-based energy capacity has increased from 81 GW to 188 GW.
“During this period, solar power capacity has increased 26 times. Similarly, wind power capacity has doubled. We are placed at fourth in the world in terms of renewable energy installed capacity. We are ranked fourth in wind power capacity. We are at fifth position in solar power capacity,” she said.
Ashwani Sehgal, President of Indian Solar Manufacturers’ Association and MD of Alpex Solar, said, “It’s a very positive step that the government announced in its interim Budget that 1 crore homes would get solar panel installation.”
This offers a robust 30 GW opportunity and has massive upside for solar manufacturers, he pointed out.
“This announcement by our finance minister is a big welcome and game changer for solar manufacturers, environment, local job creation and shall take solar panels to all nooks and corners of Bharat,” he added.
Anujesh Dwivedi, Partner, Deloitte India, said, “Empowering one crore households with rooftop solar installations, delivering up to 300 free units monthly, signifies a transformative synergy for the power sector.”
This initiative not only advances renewable energy capacity installation in the country but also addresses the chronic issue of poor financial viability and subsidy dependence of DISCOMs, marking a significant stride towards sustainability and economic efficiency, Dwivedi said.
By fostering a widespread adoption of rooftop solar, this initiative not only enhances environmental sustainability but also empowers households, contributing to energy self-sufficiency and fostering a more resilient and decentralised power infrastructure for the nation, Dwivedi added.
On VGF for offshore wind, Dwivedi said the timely announcement of VGF for a 1 GW offshore wind capacity is a strategic move, “aligning with our national ambition to achieve 500 GW of installed capacity from non-fossil fuel sources by 2030”.
Essar Power CEO Kush Singh said, “The government’s commitment to providing free rooftop solar electricity to one crore households signifies a strategic move towards resource-efficient economic growth. This initiative not only ensures energy security but also stimulates entrepreneurship and employment in the evolving renewable energy landscape.”
ReNew Founder Chairman and CEO Sumant Sinha said continued priority to achieve rapid growth of the green energy sector is clear.
Announcements on VGF for offshore wind energy and allocations for solar rooftop projects will support development of the whole industry, he said.
The announcement of Rs 1 lakh crore corpus for research and development in sunrise sectors sets a positive tone for the future, encouraging us to accelerate our investments and innovations in renewable energy technologies, he said.

Budget guarantee of strengthening foundation of developed India: Modi

NEW DELHI: Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Thursday said the interim Budget presented by Union Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman offers the “guarantee” of strengthening the foundation of a developed India and carries the “confidence of continuity”.
In a televised address following the budget, he said it will empower the four pillars of developed India — the young, poor, women and farmers.
“This is a budget of creating India’s future,” Modi said, adding that it reflects the young aspirations of a young India.
While keeping the fiscal deficit under control, the prime minister noted that total expenditure has seen a historic increase to Rs 11,11,111 crore in this budget.
“In economists’ parlance, this is a kind of sweet spot,” Modi said.
He said it will create millions of new employment opportunities for India’s youth along with the creation of modern infrastructure of the 21st century.
Asserting that the budget carries the “confidence of continuity”, he described it as “not merely an interim budget but an inclusive and innovative budget”.
Citing the announcement of a Rs 1 lakh crore fund for research and innovation, the prime minister noted that the “historic” budget has also offered rebates for start-ups. It has provisions for a huge capital expenditure of Rs 11.11 lakh crore while keeping the fiscal deficit under control, he said.
The budget empowers the poor and middle class and will create countless employment opportunities for the youth, Modi said.
Modi said the government sets a big goal, achieves it, and then sets an even bigger target for itself.
Highlighting the government’s efforts for the welfare of the poor and the middle class, he referred to the construction of over four crore houses in villages and cities and increasing the target to build two crore more houses.
Underlining the emphasis on empowerment of women, the prime minister said, “Our goal was to make two crore ‘lakhpatis’ among women. Now, this goal has been increased to make three crore ‘lakhpatis’.”
He also praised the government’s flagship Ayushman Bharat scheme for its significant assistance to the poor, extending its benefits to Anganwadi and ASHA workers.
Modi highlighted the government’s emphasis on empowering the poor and the middle class by creating new opportunities for them in the budget.
He spoke of the rooftop solar campaign where one crore families will avail free electricity while also earning an income of Rs 15,000 to Rs 18,000 per year by selling excess electricity to the government.
The income tax remission scheme announced in the budget, he said, will provide relief to about one crore citizens belonging to the middle class.
Discussing the major decisions taken for farmers’ welfare in the budget, Modi mentioned the Nano DAP (fertiliser), a new scheme for animals, expansion of the PM Matsya Sampada Yojana and the ‘Atmanirbhar’ oil seed campaign that will increase the income of farmers and reduce expenses.

LG hails Interim Union Budget for 2024-2025

JAMMU: Lieutenant Governor Manoj Sinha hailed the Interim Union Budget for 2024-2025, presented by the Hon’ble Finance and Corporate Affairs Minister Smt Nirmala Sitharaman, in Parliament today.
The Lt Governor tweeted: “Union Budget reflects historic achievements of 10 years of Hon’ble PM Sh Narendra Modi Ji’s govt & outlines his vision for Viksit Bharat by 2047. Hon’ble FM Smt. Nirmala Sitharaman Ji has aptly noted that people are looking ahead to future with hope & optimism. The budget is dedicated to a better future of common man. The emphasis on inclusivity, social inclusivity through coverage of all strata of the society, and geographical inclusivity through development of all regions of the country has put the Indian economy on a fast-track. Hon’ble FM has announced several schemes for the biggest four castes in the interim budget. The target of 3 crore Lakhpati Didi, corpus of Rs. 1 Lakh Cr to accelerate innovations, new schemes for farmers & poor, will put the country on to a faster & high growth path”.

Budget: Over Rs 2 lakh Cr allocated to MHA

Rs 37,277.74 Cr for Police, PMF in J&K

NEW DELHI: The interim budget 2024-25 on Thursday allocated Rs 202868.70 crore to the Ministry of Home Affairs with the highest share of funds going to the paramilitary forces like CRPF, BSF and CISF.
While Rs 132345.47 crore was given to the police under which the paramilitary forces come, Rs 37277.74 crore was given to Jammu and Kashmir, which has been a Union Territory after the abrogation of Article 370 and bifurcation of the state in 2019.
Ladakh got Rs 5958 crore, Andaman and Nicobar Islands Rs 5866.37 crore, Chandigarh Rs 5862.62 crore, Puducherry Rs 3269.00 crore, Dadra and Nagar Haveli and Dama and Diu Rs 2648.97 crore and Rs 1490.10 crore was given to Lakshadweep and Rs 1168.01 to Delhi.
A sum of Rs 1248.91 crore was given to cabinet under which the expenditure on council of ministers, cabinet secretariat, Prime Minister’s Office, hospitality and entertainment of the government come.
Among the paramilitary forces, Rs 32809.65 crore was given to the CRPF from a revised estimate of Rs 31389.04 crore in 2023-24, Rs 25027.52 crore to the BSF (Rs 25038.68 crore in 2023-24), Rs 13655.84 crore to CISF (Rs 12929.85 crore), Rs 8253.53 crore to ITBP (Rs 8203.68 crore in 2023-24), Rs 8485.77 crore to SSB (Rs 8435.68 crore in 2023-24) and Rs 7368.33 crore to the Assam Rifles (Rs 7276.29 crore in 2023-24).
The Central Reserve Police Force (CRPF) is mostly deployed for internal security duties, operations against terrorists in Jammu and Kashmir, Naxals in central and eastern India and the insurgents in the Northeast.
The Border Security Force (BSF) mostly guards the Indo-Pakistan and Indo-Bangladesh borders besides it is also deployed internal security duties. The Central Industrial Security Force (CISF) guards vital installations like nuclear plants, airports, metro networks.
The Indo Tibetan Border Police (ITBP) guards the Sino-Indian border, the Shashastra Seema Bal (SSB) guards the Indo-Nepal and Indo-Bhutan borders, the Assam Rifles protects India’s border with Myanmar.
While the Intelligence Bureau (IB) has been allocated Rs 3195.09 crore (Rs 3268.94 crore in 2023-24), Rs 11177.50 crore to the Delhi Police (Rs 11940.33 crore in 2023-24), Rs 506.32 crore to the Special Protection Group (SPG) (Rs 446.83 crore in 2023-24).
The IB is India’s internal intelligence agency, the Delhi Police guards the national capital and the SPG provides the security to the Prime Minister.
The budget allocated Rs 3199.62 crore for security related expenditure and Special Infrastructure Scheme for Left Wing Extremist Areas, Rs 335.00 crore for Border Area Development Programme, Rs 214.44 crore for safe city projects, and Rs 330.00 crore for Land Port Authority of India.

KEY HIGHLIGHTS

People-Centric Inclusive Development
* Substantive development of all forms of infrastructure-Physical, Digital and Social
* Digital Public Infrastructure (DPI)-Promoted formalisation and financial inclusion
* Deepening and widening of tax base via GST
* Strengthened financial sector brought savings, credit and Investment back on track
* GIFT IFSC- A robust gateway for global capital and financial services for the economy
* Proactive Inflation management
* All parts of country becoming active participants in economic growth
Garib Kalyan, Desh ka Kalyan
* DBT has led to savings of Rs 2.7 lakh crore
* 25 crore people moved out of Multidimensional poverty
* Credit assistance to 78 lakh street vendors under PM-SVANidhi
Empowering the Youth
* 1.4 crore youth trained under Skill India Mission
* Fostering entrepreneurial aspirations of Youth-43 crore loans sanctioned under PM Mudra Yojana
Welfare of Farmers-Annadata
* Direct financial assistance to 11.8 crore farmers under PM-KISAN
* Crop Insurance to 4 crore farmers under PM Fasal Bima Yojana
* Integration 1,361 mandis under e-NAM, supporting trading volume of Rs 3 lakh crore
Nari Shakti
* 30 crore Mudra Yojana loans disbursed to women entrepreneurs
* Increased female enrolment in higher education by 28 per cent in 10 years
* 43 per cent of female enrolment in STEM courses
* 1 crore women assisted by 83 lakh SHGs to become Lakhpati Didis
Sustainable Development
* Commitment to meet ‘Net Zero’ by 2070                                                                                                    * Viability gap funding for wind energy
* Setting up of coal gasification and liquefaction capacity
* Phased mandatory blending of CNG, PNG and compressed biogas
* Financial assistance for procurement of biomass aggregation machinery
* Rooftop solarization-1 crore households will be enabled to obtain up to 300 units of free electricity per month
* Adoption of e-buses for public transport network
* Strengthening e-vehicle ecosystem by supporting manufacturing and charging
* New scheme of biomanufacturing and bio-foundry to be launched to support environment friendly alternatives
* >10 crore LPG connections released under PMUY
* 36.9 crore LED bulbs, 72.2 lakh LED Tube lights, and 23.6 lakh Energy efficient fans distributed under UJALA
* 1.3 crore LED Street Lights installed under SNLP
Infrastructure and Investment
* Implementation of 3 major railway corridor programmes under PM Gati Shakti-to improve logistics efficiency and reduce cost
* Promotion of foreign investment via bilateral investment treaties to be negotiated
* Expansion of existing airports and comprehensive development of new airports under UDAN scheme
* Promotion of urban transformation via Metro rail and NaMo Bharat Health
* Encourage Cervical Cancer Vaccination for girls (9-14 years)
* Saksham Anganwadi and Poshan 2.0 to be expedited for improved nutrition delivery, early childhood care and development
* U-WIN platform for immunisation efforts of Mission Indradhanush to be rolled out
* Health cover under Ayushman Bharat scheme to be extended to all ASHA, Angawadi workers and helpers
Housing
* Pradhan Mantri Awas Yojana (Grameen) close to achieving target of 3 crore houses, additional 2 crore targeted for next 5 years
* Housing for Middle Class scheme to be launched to promote middle class to buy/built their own houses
Tourism
* States will be encouraged to undertake development of iconic tourist centres to attract business and promote opportunities for local entrepreneurship
* Long-term interest free loans to be provided to States to encourage development Projects for port connectivity, tourism infrastructure, and amenities will be taken up in islands, including Lakshadweep
Agriculture and Food Processing
* Government will promote private and public investment in post-harvest activities
* Application of Nano-DAP to be expanded in all agro-climatic zones
* Atmanirbhar Oilseeds Abhiyaan-Strategy to be formulated to achieve atmanirbharta for oilseeds
* Comprehensive programme for dairy development to be formulated
* Implementation of Pradhan Mantri Matsaya Sampada Yojana to be stepped up to enhance aquaculture productivity, double exports and generate more employment opportunities
* 5 Integrated Aquaparks to be set up
Achievements of Taxation Reforms
* Direct Tax Collections more than trebled in last 10 years
* Number of return filers swelled to 2.4 times
* Faster refunds: Reduction in average processing time of returns from 93 days (2013-14) to 10 days (2023-24)
Average monthly Gross GST
* Collections doubled to Rs 1.66 lakh crore in FY24
* Increase in tax buoyancy of State revenue from 0.72 (2012-16) to 1.22 in the post-GST period (2017-23)
Positive sentiment about GST
* 94% industry leasers view transition to GST as largely positive
* 80% of respondents feel GST has led to supply-chain optimisation
Decline in import release time since 2019 by: –
* 47 per cent at Inland Container Depots
* 28 per cent at Air Cargo complexes
* 27 per cent at Sea Ports

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