Prime Minister Narendra Modi has termed the Union Budget for 2018-19 “development-friendly”, underlining that it will strengthen the vision of a ‘new India’. The budget, he emphasised, will create new opportunities for rural India.
He said the budget has devoted attention to all sectors, ranging from agriculture to infrastructure and is “farmer-friendly, common citizen-friendly, business environment- friendly and development-friendly.”
Congratulating Finance Minister Arun Jaitley and his team, the Prime Minister said farmers, Dalits and tribal communities will gain from the budget. This is the government’s last full budget before the general elections.
“It will give pace to the development of the country…the government is focused not just on ‘ease of doing business’ but also on ‘ease of living’,” the Prime Minister said, adding that the budget will add to ‘ease of living’ and ‘ease of doing business’.
Discussing various schemes of his government, including the construction of toilets and initiatives in the areas of housing, power and health, Prime Minister Modi emphasised that the budget devotes attention to all sectors, ranging from agriculture to infrastructure.
The budget is “farmer friendly, common citizen friendly, business environment friendly” and will add to ‘ease of living’ and ‘ease of doing business’, Modi added.
The government will soon announce concrete steps to address non-performing assets (NPA) and ‘stress account’ issues for the micro, small and medium enterprises (MSME) sector, he said.
“For a long time, MSMEs faced a lot of burden on the tax front. In this budget, we have also reduced the corporate taxes that MSMEs owe. Now, they have to pay only 25 per cent tax instead of 30 per
cent,” he said.
Stressing on the health sector, PM Modi said ‘Ayushman Bharat’ scheme is the biggest government funded health assurance scheme in the world and will allow the poor to receive up to Rs five lakh per annum for treatment in select hospitals.
“It will help them get rid of the worry of incurring cost to get quality treatment. It will help 10 crore families (45- 50 crore people),” he said.
On the Budget allocation to the new infrastructure such as new airports, ports, railway tracks, metro projects, he said it will generate new employment opportunities.
“This Budget strengthens the hopes of 1.25 crore Indians…our farmers have produced record grains and vegetables. To strengthen farmers further, we have taken several important steps,” Modi said.
On the subject of government’s welfare schemes, Modi said it will have a direct benefit for the Dalits, poor and backward citizens who are standing on the fringes of the society.
(With inputs from PTI)