The Hush Post | 1:00 pm | three-minute-read
The acting finance minister Piyush Goyal presented the National Democratic Alliance’s (NDA) sixth and final budget. The focus of most of the Indians are on two areas — income tax and farm package — in the pre-election season, since general elections are round the corner.
Standing in, since finance minister Arun Jaitley is on medical leave, this is Piyush Goyal’s first budget speech,
Catch all the budget 2019 live updates:
* Standard deduction limit increased
* Standard deduction to be raised from Rs. 40,000 to Rs. 50,000
*No tax if you own second house
*Tax free income of up to ₹6.5 lakh
*Salary earners of up to ₹6,50,000 income to not pay tax if they make tax related investments
*Income tax exemption limit raised
*Salary earners up to ₹5,00,000 annual income to get full tax rebate.
ITR refunds to come in 24 hours
*All income tax returns will now be processed in 24 hours and refunds issued simultaneously. Within next 2 years, returns chosen for scrutiny will also be done digitally with anonymity.
Total expenditure rose by 13%
Railways get ₹1.58 trillion
The Union budget has allocated ₹1.58 trillion for Indian Railways to expand the railway infrastructure in the country.
In his interim-budget speech on Friday, finance minister Piyush Goyal said Indian Railways has witnessed its safest year in history in 2018-19. The national carrier has been able to remove all unmanned railway crossings across all the broad gauge tracks in the country.
He also said that people of India would soon have world-class train experience through semi-high speed train Vande Bharat Express which is a product of Indian engineering.
Govt trying to reduce GST burden on homebuyers
We want GST burden on homebuyers lessened and we have formed a group of ministers (GoM) to look into it, Piyush Goyal said.
PM-Kisan scheme to cost ₹75,000 crore
Small and marginal farmers owning less than 5 acres of land will receive the first installment soon, finance minister Piyush Goyal said in his budget speech.
According to Goyal, the scheme will run from 1 December 2018 and towards this the budget has allocated an additional ₹20,000 crore in the revised estimates for 2018-19.
For 2019-20, the Prime Minister Kisan Samman Nidhi or PM-Kisan scheme received a budgetary allocation of ₹75,000 crore.
Announcing the scheme, finance minister Goyal said the direct income support which farmers will receive in their bank accounts shortly will help them lead a life of dignity and respect.
According to the budget speech, about 120 million farm households will receive an income support of ₹2,000, thrice a year.
Defence outlay increased for 2019-20
The defence budget, interim finance minister Piyush Goyal announced, was increased for the first time to three lakh crore in 2019-20 “for securing our borders and to maintain preparedness of highest order and if necessary additional funds will be provided.”
Last year, out of total allocation of Rs 295,511 crore for defence budget, only Rs 99,947 crore was set aside for capital outlay for purchase of new weapons, aircraft, warships and other military hardware.
Tax collections doubled to ₹12 lakh crore
Tax collections increased from ₹ 6 lakh crore to ₹ 12 lakh crore, return filings have also gone up. All returns will now be processed in 24 hours and refunds issued simultaneously. Within next 2 years, returns chosen for scrutiny will also be done digitally with anonymity.
Budget 2019 announces mega pension scheme for unorganised sector workers.
Mega pension scheme
Targeting a huge electorate ahead of 2019 polls, Finance Minister Piyush Goyal announced a mega pension scheme to provide assured pension of Rs 3,000 rupees per month to nearly 10 crore people working in largely fragmented informal sector.
These informal workers joining the pension scheme at 18 years will pay Rs 55 per month and Rs 100 if joining at the age of 29. The pension will be paid once they reach the age of 60.
“(We are starting) Mega Pension Yojana, namely Pradhan Mantri Shram Yogi Mandhan, to provide assured monthly pension of 3000 rupees per month, with contribution of 100 rupees per month, for workers in unorganized sector after 60 years of age,” Goyal said in his Budget speech.
“Will benefit 10 crore workers in unorganized sector, may become the world’s biggest pension scheme for unorganized sector in five years,” he added.
Domestic workers, beedi workers, small shop workers among others may benefit from the announcement but the details on how it will be implemented and how the government will calculate the income threshold is yet to be spelt out.
Rural employment guarantee programme gets a ₹5,000 crore push
The National Democratic Alliance government boosted allocation for the rural employment guarantee programme by ₹5000 crore to ₹55,000 crore in the 2019-20 interim budget. The scheme that is seen as a lifeline for small farmers and agricultural labourers in times of rural distress given that it provides 100 days of unskilled employment to them.
Boost for SMEs
Govt projects to source 25% material from SMEs, 3% from only women-owned SMEs
8 crore LPG cylinders under PM Ujwala Yojana
Total of 8 crore cooking gas cylinders to be distributed by next year under PM Ujwala Yojana
Gratuity cap doubled to ₹20 lakh
Gratuity exemption limit doubled to ₹20 lakh from 10 lakh
₹750 crore for cow protection
Allocation of ₹750 crore under Rashtriya Gokul Yojana for protection of cows. The government will create a separate department for fisheries.