Budget 2021 LIVE: Budget is a shot in the arm for Indian economy, says S&P

Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman | Photo: PTI
Budget 2021 LIVE updates: Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman presented her third Union Budget in Parliament, which rests on six pillars – health and well-being, physical, financial capital and infrastructure, inclusive development for aspirational India, reinvigorating human capital, innovation and R&D and minimum government and maximum governance. The finance minister has announced a total spend of around Rs 2 trillion on healthcare and mega national highway projects in election-bound states of Tamil Nadu, West Bengal, Assam and Kerala.

Addressing the nation after the Budget presentation, Prime Minister Narendra Modi said this year's Budget was prepared under unprecendented circumstances. He said it speaks of 'all-round development'.

"From Covid-related reforms to Atmanirbhar resolve, we moved ahead with this mantra in Budget 2021. It's an active and not a reactive budget," he added, congratulating Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman and her team.

The Budget speech was keenly watched by both domestic and foreign investors, various interest groups like farmers, anxious middle class and corporate entities, besides parliamentarians.

As the Covid-19 pandemic hit India last year, the government witnessed a rising expenditure and tumbling revenue, even as economic activity came to a standstill due to the pandemic-induced lockdown. However, the economy is now in a recovery mode. On Friday, the government tabled the Economic Survey 2020, which pegged India's real GDP growth at 11 per cent in FY22.

Stay tuned for Budget 2021 LIVE updates with Business Standard.

LIVE UPDATES

Budget 2021: Textile parks may attract big investments from players

Large apparel manufacturers may consider investing in the seven textile parks proposed in the Union Budget on Monday. The Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman had said that textiles were a champion sector under its Make in India programme.
 
The parks, to be set up over 1,000 acres of land in three years, will be in addition to the Rs 10,683-crore production linked incentive (PLI) scheme for technical textiles and manmade fibre announced earlier.
 
Industry experts and executives that Business Standard spoke to said that up to Rs 5,000 crore could be pumped in by large garment manufacturers and exporters, keen to take advantage of the tax sops and benefits that the parks will provide. READ ON...

Budget proposes astute reforms, simultaneous action for supply and demand

The economic survey gave us key numbers for GDP growth: 6, 4, -7.7 and 11 for 21-22! Highest growth in the world for India seemed on the cards.
 
The V-shaped recovery is fed by an initial severe lockdown, in kind relief, financial and legal forbearance and some cash in the hands of the poorest. This was followed by a calibrated opening up. These actions extended the fiscal, caused a current account surplus, led to FDI and FPI flows and an unprecedented Foreign currency reserve of US$ 586billion. Clearly, astute reforms and simultaneous supply and demand side actions are in place. Investment in health, education, innovation, infrastructure, digitisation, and recapitalisation of state-owned banks are all signalled. READ MORE...

 

Budget 2021 breather for 'small companies', LLPs and one-person companies

More than 200,000 companies will have reduced compliance burden following a change in the definition of small companies announced in the Union Budget 2021-22 in terms of fewer compliances, and lower filing fees and penalties.
 
The budget has raised the threshold of paid-up capital for small companies from Rs 50 lakh to Rs 2 crore and turnover from Rs 2 crore to Rs 20 crore. Companies falling under this definition would not have to prepare cash flows as part of financial statements and would need to hold only two board meetings a year.

While other companies must provide details of remuneration to directors and key managerial personnel, small companies have to give details of the only aggregate amount of remuneration drawn by directors in their annual returns. Mandatory rotation of auditors would also not be required. READ ON...


How will Budget 2021 impact senior citizens, NRIs and salaried people

Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman presented her third Union Budget in Parliament, which rests on six pillars – health and well-being, physical, financial capital and infrastructure, inclusive development for aspirational India, reinvigorating human capital, innovation and R&D and minimum government and maximum governance. The finance minister has announced a total spend of around Rs 2 trillion on healthcare and mega national highway projects in election-bound states of Tamil Nadu, West Bengal, Assam and Kerala.
 
In this podcast, Business Standard talked about the key announcements of Budget 20021 in detail - how the Budget will impact finances of senior citizens, non resident Indians, salaried people and the changes in taxation on Ulips and ease of ITR
 

PSU divestment, LIC IPO, fiscal deficit: How brokerages read Budget 2021

Markets have been on fire after Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman presented Budget proposals for fiscal 2021-22 (FY22) with the S&P BSE Sensex surging over 3,300 points in just two sessions. Most brokerages have given a thumbs-up to the proposals, calling them ‘pro-growth’ that will entail a capex-driven revival of Covid-19 impacted Indian economy, even though fiscal deficit and the borrowing programme of the government for the next financial year came in a tad higher-than-expectation.
 
Divestment of select public sector banks (PSBs) and one general insurance company, initial public offer (IPO) of Life Insurance Corporation (LIC), Air India, tax rationalisation of dividends of foreign portfolio investors (FPIs) and bringing them at par with treaty rates coupled with no new taxes for investment in capital markets are some of the proposals that have propped up markets.
 

Why pharma stocks are underperforming despite Rs 2.23 trn Budget allocation

Union Budget 2021, which was presented amid a global health crisis, was sketched with 6 pillars in focus. Among these, healthcare was the foremost agendum of Finance Minister Nirmala Sitha­raman’s Budget speech, and the sector was allocated a generous pie of the entire budgetary allocation.
 
At Rs 223,846 crore, the sector's allocation jumped around 118 per cent over the Revised Estimate of the current fiscal year. Yet, stocks from the sector have been underwhelming at the bourses. READ ABOUT IT HERE
 
The S&P BSE Healthcare index is up just 1 per cent on the BSE today, at 20,891.5 levels, as against an over 2 per cent gain in the S&P BSE Sensex. In the past two days, the Sensex index has jumped nearly 4,000 points or 7.2 per cent, compared with the Healthcare index’s 1.2 per cent gain. READ MORE...

 

Budget session: 27 bills passed earlier to be presented in Lok Sabha today

On the second day of the Budget Session, 27 bills passed by the Houses of Parliament during the fourth session of the 17th Lok Sabha will be tabled in the Lower House on Tuesday.
 
Today's Lok Sabha session will also see various Standard Committee reports on Coal and Steel, Home Affairs, Health and Family Welfare, among others being presented.
 
After the Lower House assembles at 4 pm, Secretary General Utpal Kumar Singh will table 27 Bills passed by the Houses of Parliament during the Fourth Session of Seventeenth Lok Sabha and assented to by President Ram Nath Kovind. READ MORE...

Budget 2021: Increase of between 1-2 per cent in women's labour force participation this year

On the occasion of the Union Budget 2021 having been presented in the parliament by Nirmala Sitaraman, Minister of Finance, Government of India, and the announcement that women will be allowed to work all shifts, there is a lot of speculation about how this will impact women's representation, ANI reported.
 
"Budget 2021 has immense potential to increase the employment of women. With the creation of two vaccines which, will ensure a return to normal economic activity, the schemes announced are well thought through and appear inclusive especially when the IMF has predicted double-digit growth for India," said Dr Saundarya Rajesh, Founder- President, Avtar Group, a social enterprise working to increase women's workforce participation and gender diversity across the country.
 
It must also be kept in mind that the COVID-19 pandemic had disproportionately impacted women forcing them to drop out of the workforce. India's women's labour force participation, according to the Centre for Monitoring Indian Economy, is at an all-time low of 21 per cent, down from 25 per cent, due to the increase in the number of jobs lost by women.

Budget 2021 a big effort by govt to boost country's economic recovery: S&P

Global rating agency Standard and Poor’s (S&P) on Tuesday said that India's Budget for FY22 represents a comprehensive effort by the central government to shore up the country's nascent economic recovery. However, the brawny spending programme also entails higher-than-expected general government deficits--at more than 14 per cent of GDP this fiscal year (FY21). It would be 11.6 per cent in FY22.
 
The rating agency, in a statement, said it currently sees no material effect from the Budget on India's key credit factors. But, the economy's brightening growth prospects will be critical to maintaining the sustainability of public finances. The general government debt likely to hover at more than 90 per cent of the Gross Domestic Product (GDP) over the next few years.
 
Union Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman presented the Budget for FY22 in the Parliament on February 1, 2021. READ ON...

India Inc sees growth revival and job creation with Budget 2021

Karthikeyan Natarajan, President and Chief Operating Officer, Cyient - "Coming out of the pandemic year, the Finance Minister has laid down a well-rounded Budget. Focus on setting up of Fintech Hub at Gift City, enhancing digital payments and use of AI in governance - all provide a strong platform for Digital India. Allocation of Rs 50,000 crore towards National Research Foundation will work towards boosting India's Innovation Quotient on the global map and is a welcome move. Allocation of funds as incentives for promoting digital payments is also a step in the right direction and a significant step in ease of doing business. Lastly, increase in allocation for highways and railways will lead to employment generation and boost the economic growth of the nation."
 
"The budget is a major step in the right direction. It outlays a strong focus on infrastructure, healthcare, capital spending, disinvestment, monetization, job creation and digitization. These measures are not only progressive and recovery-led, if implemented correctly would ease the burden on the economy and lead India towards the projected v-shaped growth and development. The budget talks about structural reforms in banking, enhancing debt financing and credit limits for businesses and asset monetization. This will lead to an increase in government spending, which, in turn will spur demand, therefore net positive for the industry. The several initiatives around job-creation, startups, reskilling, rural development and better quality of services to people are positive as a Nation cannot progress without care for the environment and inclusive all-round transformation," said Rajiv Bhalla, MD, Barco India.

Wider fiscal deficit, consolidation could pressure India's ratings: Fitch

Wider fiscal deficits and a more gradual pace of consolidation will lift the Indian government's debt and pressure its sovereign ratings, Fitch Ratings said, cautioning that the fiscal firepower is limited due to a high debt ratio.
 
Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman said the current year fiscal deficit will touch 9.5% of GDP, much higher than the budgeted 3.5% and sharply above analyst estimates of around 7%. Read on...

Congress leader Adhir Ranjan Chaudhary gives adjournment motion notice in Lok Sabha over farm laws

Leader of Congress Party in Lok Sabha, Adhir Ranjan Chaudhary and party Chief Whip in Lok Sabha Koddikunil Suresh have given adjournment motion notice in Lok Sabha over farm laws.

Deficit targets in Budget 2021 are higher: Fitch

Deficit targets presented in India's Budget are higher and medium-term consolidation more gradual than expected, Fitch Ratings said on Tuesday.
 
The government's prioritisation of fiscal support for the population's health and well-being, and ongoing economic recovery are understandable.
 
"At the same time, however, there is little fiscal space given India's high public debt ratio prior to the virus shock (around 90 per cent of GDP compared to the 53 per cent 2020 'BBB median)," said Jeremy Zook, Director at Fitch Ratings' Asia Pacific Sovereigns team.
 
"The Budget forecasts wider near-term deficits of 9.5 per cent of GDP in FY21 and 6.8 per cent in FY22 and a more gradual pace of consolidation than we had previously anticipated reaching 4.5 per cent only by FY26," he said.

India's bigger Budget is a shot in the arm for economy: S&P

India's Budget for fiscal 2022 (ending March 31, 2022) represents a comprehensive effort by the Central government to shore up the country's nascent economic recovery, S & P Global Rating said on Tuesday.
 
But the brawny spending programme also entails higher-than-expected general government deficits -- at more than 14 per cent of GDP this fiscal year and 11.6 per cent in fiscal 2022.
 
"While we currently see no material effect from the Budget on key credit factors, the economy's brightening growth prospects will be critical to maintaining the sustainability of public finances, with general government debt likely to hover at more than 90 per cent of GDP over the next few years."

Budget session 2021 LIVE: RS chairman calls for disruption-free, orderly discussions in House

Keen to ensure orderly functioning of the Upper House of Parliament, Rajya Sabha Chairman M Venkaiah Naidu on Tuesday asked MPs to follow rules, maintain discipline and dignity while discussing issues of national and public importance in the House.
 
Making a veiled reference to the ugly scenes witnessed in the House during the passage of farm bills in the last session, Naidu asked members to make the current budget session "more purposeful" where issues are discussed threadbare in "a peaceful, orderly and dignified manner."
 
"Last time some unfortunate incidents happened," he said without going into the details.
 
In September last year, opposition MPs tore the rule book, climbed on the podium and created a ruckus during the passage of three farm sector reform bills.
 
"It is binding on all of us to see that the House functions properly, members follow rules and regulations, maintain discipline and dignity and also participate in debates in a meaningful manner," Naidu said.
 
"I have all along been appealing to members to prevent any such situation which will affect the interest of Parliament and also the nation," he said.
 

How right is it to use budget as 'tool' to win polls? Sena

The Shiv Sena on Tuesday claimed Union Minister Nirmala Sitharaman has announced big packages in the budget for some poll-bound states, and asked how right is it to use the budget as a "tool" to win elections.
 
Accusing the Centre of setting a new trend of playing "dirty politics" for votes through the budget, an editorial in Sena mouthpiece 'Saamana' said the allocation of more funds to poll-bound states is a kind of "bribery".
 
It also accused the Centre of ignoring Maharashtra which, it said, contributes highest revenue to the Union government's coffers.
 
Finance Minister Sitharaman presented the 2021-22 Union Budget on Monday.

Rajya Sabha adjourned till 11:30 am


PSU divestment, LIC IPO, fiscal deficit: How brokerages read Budget 2021

Markets have been on fire after Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman presented Budget proposals for fiscal 2021-22 (FY22) with the S&P BSE Sensex surging over 3,300 points in just two sessions. Most brokerages have given a thumbs-up to the proposals, calling them ‘pro-growth’ that will entail a capex-driven revival of Covid-19 impacted Indian economy, even though fiscal deficit and the borrowing programme of the government for the next financial year came in a tad higher-than-expectation. Read on...

Budget session 2021: Rajya Sabha adjourned till 10:30 am

Rajya Sabha adjourned till 10:30 am after Opposition creates ruckus over farm laws.

Union Home Minister Amit Shah reaches Parliament in New Delhi


Proceedings of Rajya Sabha begin

Proceedings of Rajya Sabha begin

Clean & transparent, sure, but was it a 'never before Budget'? Watch this insightful discussion on Budget 2021

What did it actually turn out to be -- a Pant Budget or Pujara Budget? Business Standard's in-house policy expert and Editorial Director A K Bhattacharya and Digital Editor Shailesh Dobhal dissect Budget 2021-22 in this insightful discussion.

Click here to watch the video


Spend, earn, tax: Finances of Union Budget 2021 explained in nine charts

Taxes on individual incomes will now bring more revenue to the government than taxes on corporate profits. Click here to read to know more

Budget to bring in positive change for investors and public: Anurag Thakur

The Union budget will bring in a positive change for investors, businesses and the general public, said Minister of State (MoS) for Finance, Anurag Thakur on Monday.
 

"We've focused on micro, small and medium enterprises (MSME) and infrastructure. We are also going to spend big on the healthcare sector. We've allocated around Rs 1.10 lakh crores for roadways and railways each. This Budget will bring in a positive change for investors, businesses and the general public," Thakur told ANI.
 

In a comparison with the previous United Progressive Alliance government at the Centre, he said that during UPA rule, crops worth Rs 3.75 lakh crore were procured whereas the NDA government procured crops worth Rs 8 lakh crore. Read more

CEOs of top tech firms hail tax norms for digital economy in Budget 2021

The chief executive officers of some of the top Indian startups and tech companies have welcomed the tax breaks and incentives in Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman’s Budget presented on Monday.
 

They said coming in the wake of the Covid-19 pandemic, the Union Budget looks to strengthen many of the important pillars for economic recovery and future growth.
 

Kalyan Krishnamurthy, CEO at e-commerce company Flipkart Group said there is a clear focus on attracting greater investments into infrastructure, boosting domestic output and creating jobs. He said it is focused on accelerating the adoption of digital technologies, and giving a much-needed boost to MSMEs (micro, small and medium enterprises) and startups. Read more

Budget will help increase rural consumption: FMCG industry

The FMCG industry on Monday said a special focus on the agriculture sector in the Union Budget will help increase rural consumption and sustain growth momentum.
 

FMCG manufacturers -- like ITC, Emami, Marico and Jyothy Labs -- said it is encouraging capital infusion in infrastructure, divestment and restructuring of allocations without impacting consumers negatively.
 

The industry also said the Budget will drive consumption and growth momentum needed to revive the economy. Read more

Kolkata healthcare sector hails increased allocation in Union budget

The healthcare sector in Kolkata on Monday welcomed the Union budget saying that an outlay of Rs 2.24 lakh crore, an increase of 137 per cent from the previous year, will augur well for the healthcare sector, according to PTI. Authorities of those medical establishments also hailed the allocation of Rs 35,000 crore for COVID-19 vaccine.


"In this year's budget, we see a significant rise in budgetary allocations for healthcare, particularly under the Atmanirbhar Bharat project," President of the Association of Hospitals of Eastern India, Rupak Barua, said. Significant allocations have also been made in the development of primary healthcare infrastructure, R&D in disease identification, and for COVID-19 vaccination, said Barua, also Group CEO of the AMRI Hospitals.


Dr Simmardeep Gill, COO of the city-based CK Birla Hospitals, said, "I acknowledge and appreciate the endeavour of the government by making provisions of an outlay of Rs 2.24 lakh crore in the budget exclusively towards healthcare, which represents an increase of about 137 per cent from last year." The allocation of Rs 35,000 crore for COVID-19 vaccines was much needed as it is the need of the hour, Director of SIRO Clinpharm Akahy Daftary said. SIRO Clinpharm provides clinical research services to health care companies.

Budget calls for creating permanent framework for buying corporate bonds

In a bid to infuse more liquidity in the fledgling corporate bond market, Union Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman announced creation of a permanent institutional framework, but finer details will tell if this could be a success, say bond market participants.
 

"To instill confidence among the participants in the corporate bond market during times of stress and to generally enhance secondary market liquidity, it is proposed to create a permanent institutional framework. The proposed body would purchase investment grade debt securities both in stressed and normal times and help in the development of the bond market,” Sitharaman said in her speech. Read more

Mission Poshan 2.0 launched in Budget to improve nutritional outcomes

The supplementary nutrition programme and the Poshan Abhiyaan has been merged to launch Mission Poshan 2.0 to strengthen nutritional content, delivery, outreach, and outcome, according to the Union Budget announced on Monday.
 

"To strengthen nutritional content, delivery, outreach, and outcome, we will merge the Supplementary Nutrition Programme and the Poshan Abhiyaan and launch the Mission Poshan 2.0. We shall adopt an intensified strategy to improve nutritional outcomes across 112 aspirational districts," Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman said. Read more

 

Budget: Rs 73,000 cr to MGNREGA, 34% less than revised estimate of FY21

The Centre has allocated Rs 73,000 crore to the rural employment guarantee programme MGNREGA for the next fiscal 2021-22, substantially lower than the actual expenditure of Rs 1.11 lakh crore in the current fiscal which included an additional Rs 40,000 crore for the scheme given by the government in the wake of the pandemic's impact on the economy.
 
The Centre had allocated Rs 40,000 crore to MGNREGA as part of the Pradhan Mantri Garib Kalyan Yojana.
 
As per a detailed financial statement, the budget presented by Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman on Monday has allocated Rs 73,000 crore, over 34 per cent less than the revised estimate of Rs 1,11,500 crore for 2020-21. The budgetary estimate for 2020-21 was Rs 61,500 crore. READ ON...

Budget 2021: Massive spending commitment for infra; new DFI on the cards

The creation of a development finance institution (DFI) will meet one of the major demands of the infrastructure sector. This will not be the first time such an institution will be created for meeting the long-term financing needs of the sector. Union Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman announced that a new law will be enacted to create the institution, which will be a provider, enabler, and catalyst for infrastructure financing.
 
Sitharaman said the government’s National Infrastructure Pipeline (NIP) — that lays specific targets — will require a major increase in funding, both from the government and the financial sector. She planned to tackle this by creating institutional structures, monetising assets, and by enhancing the share of capital expenditure in central and state budgets. READ MORE...

Budget 2021: Govt proposes Rs 20,000-crore recapitalisation for PSBs

Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman on Monday said the government would infuse Rs 20,000 crore into public sector banks (PSBs) in 2021-22, to meet the regulatory norms.
 
For the current financial year also, the government had made a provision of Rs 20,000 crore for recapitalisation.
 
Unveiling the Budget 2021-22 in the Lok Sabha, the finance minister said the government has proposed to infuse Rs 20,000 crore into the PSBs, to further consolidate financial health of banks. During 2019-20, the government had proposed to make a Rs 70,000-crore capital infusion into the PSBs to boost credit for a strong impetus to the economy. READ MORE...

Budget 2021 unveils scheme for setting up mega textile parks in India

The government on Monday unveiled a scheme for setting up mega textile parks in the country, as part of the Centre's efforts to position India as a fully integrated, globally competitive manufacturing and exporting hub for the sector. Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman made the announcement while presenting the Budget 2021-22 in Parliament.
 
"A scheme of mega investment textile parks will be launched in addition to the PLI scheme," Sitharaman said.
 
She informed that 7 mega textile parks will be launched in three years as part of the scheme. The mega textile parks will have integrated facilities and quick turnaround time for minimizing transportation losses, eyeing big-ticket investments in the sector. READ ON...

Budget 2021: Govt proposes to increase FDI cap in insurance sector to 74%

The government on Monday proposed to increase foreign direct investment (FDI) limit in the insurance sector to 74 per cent, a move aimed at attracting overseas players.
 
In the first paperless Union Budget, Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman also said investor charter would be introduced as a right of all financial investors across all financial products.
 
She proposed to amend the Insurance Act 1938 to "increase the permissible FDI limit from 49 per cent to 74 per cent in insurance companies and allow foreign ownership and control with safeguards". READ MORE...

Union Budget 2021 LIVE: Rs 2.87 trillion outlay for Jal Jeevan mission

The government on Monday announced the Jal Jeevan mission with an outlay of Rs 2.87 lakh crore for 4,378 urban local bodies. Presenting the Union Budget for 2021-22, Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman further said Swachh Bharat 2.0 will be implemented with an outlay of Rs 1,41,678 crore over a period of five years.
 
In order to boost manufacturing in India, the finance minister also announced a production linked incentive (PLI) scheme with an outlay of Rs 1.97 lakh crore for 5 years starting this fiscal.
 
A scheme of mega investment textiles park in addition to PLI scheme will be launched, Sitharaman said, adding the government will also introduce a bill to set up a development financial institution with an outlay of Rs 20,000 crore. READ MORE...

Budget to spend Rs 2.84 trillion on health, raising expenditure by 137%

India will spend Rs 64,180 crore in over six years on a programme to improve its health infrastructure, said Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman on Monday as she presented the Union Budget 2021-22. 
 
The budget for "health and wellness" is Rs 2,83,846 crore (Rs 2.83 trillion)--137 per cent greater than last year.
 
"The investment on health infrastructure in this budget has increased substantially. Progressively, as institutions absorb more, we shall commit more. We focus on strengthening three areas - preventive, curative and well-being," she said in Parliament. READ ON...
 

Budget 2021 LIVE: Income tax rates remain unchanged

'Bold' budget to bring focus back to traditional sectors: Analysts

The Budget for FY22 scores high on many counts, if the Sensex’s 5-per-cent jump is any parameter to go by. Not only has the finance minister taken the responsibility of government spending, but has also indicated to investors that a comeback for traditional brick-and-mortar sectors — infrastructure, metals, cement and allied manufacturing pockets — is on the cards.
 
This is a stark deviation in stance marking the re-entry of infrastructure spending-led growth, as against consumption-driven growth for the past 10-12 years. Some experts say we may have gone back in time for good. The last time the Sensex rose over 5 per cent on Budget Day was in 1999, reacting to an ‘unexpectedly friendly’ Budget from Yashwant Sinha. READ MORE...

LIVE: What Budget 2021 means for your earnings, savings and investments

Business Standard's Sanjay Kumar Singh explains the changes announced by Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman in the Union Budget and how this is going to affect your money life. The expectations from this Budget were very high as people suffered heavily due to the pandemic. A change in tax slabs was expected to give some relief to citizens. But that has not happened. Watch the video to understand the impact of Budget 2021.
 

People with disabilities neglected in Budget 2021: Disability rights NGOs

Some disability rights NGOs have expressed disappointment over differently-abled people being allegedly "neglected" in the 2021-22 Budget unveiled on Monday. Other than exempting senior citizens above 75 from filing ITR and easier dividend payout, the Budget has no specific mention of inclusion and schemes for persons with disabilities, PTI reported.
 
Arman Ali, the executive director of the National Centre for Promotion of Employment for Disabled People (NCPEDP), said the Budget document talks about it being dependent on six pillars, one of them being inclusive development for aspirational India, but persons with disabilities have once again been "neglected".
 
"Year after year, disability sector sends its asks to the Govt of India but this time again these asks were not even mentioned. This budget was of utmost importance due to the ongoing pandemic as people have lost jobs and children have dropped out of schools because of the lack of facilities," he said.
 
Ali said the Atma Nirbhar Swasthya Bharat Scheme', which is the highlight of this budget, focuses on strengthening primary and secondary healtcare centres but has no word on persons with disabilities.

Budget 2021 LIVE: Govt to set up Rs 20,000 crORE DFI to promote infra financing

Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman on Monday said the government will set up a Rs 20,000 crore Development Finance Institution (DFI) with a view to mobilise Rs 111 lakh crore required for funding of the ambitious national infrastructure pipeline.
 
Unveiling the Union Budget 2021-22, the Finance Minister said that a professionally-managed DFI to be set up to provide, enable and catalyze infrastructure financing.
 
The government proposes Rs 20,000 crore to capitalise this institution and aims to have a lending portfolio of at least Rs 5 lakh crore in three years. READ MORE...

 

Budget 2021: Delhi govt accuses Centre of favouring big companies

The Delhi government on Monday accused the Centre of giving step motherly treatment to the national capital in the Union budget 2021-22, and claimed the budget is aimed at benefitting few big companies.
 
"This budget is aimed at benefiting few big companies. It will increase inflation and problems for the public," Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal tweeted in Hindi.
 
Deputy Chief Minister Manish Sisodia said Delhi continues to get step motherly treatment from the central government.
 
"Union Budget is a vision document of any government and spells out its economic agenda for the next financial year. This year there was great anticipation around the Union Budget and people of Delhi had high hopes from the central government that justice would finally be done to them, particularly amid the COVID-19 pandemic which has devastated lives of many people," he said. READ ON...

Budget 2021 LIVE: Agriculture companies cheer higher allocation to farm sector

Agri and food companies on Monday hailed the decision to hike farm credit target and increase allocation for the agriculture ministry in the Budget, saying this will help in boosting farmers' income and overall growth of the sector.
 
Asserting that the government is committed towards farmers' welfare, Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman on Monday proposed 10 per cent hike in the farm loan disbursal target to Rs 16.5 lakh crore, and introduced an agri infra and development cess of up to 100 per cent to create post-harvest infrastructure for improving farmers' income. READ MORE...

Budget 2021 LIVE: Subsidy bill to fall 43% to Rs 3.36 trillion in FY22

The government on Monday projected the subsidy bill on food, fertilisers, LPG and kerosene oil to fall by 43 per cent in the next fiscal to Rs 3.36 lakh crore from Rs 5.96 lakh crore in 2020-21 that witnessed the distribution of free foodgrains to about 80 crore poor towards COVID-19 impact mitigation.
 
As per the Budget 2021-22 documents presented in Parliament on Monday, the major subsidies are estimated to jump over 2.5 times to Rs 5.96 lakh crore this fiscal as against the estimates prepared in the February 2020 Budget.
 
Under its Aatmanirbhar Bharat packages, the government distributed additional 5 kg food grains per person each month during April-November period as the economic activities came to a screeching halt following the lockdown in late March. The lockdown has been now significantly eased. READ ON...

Budget 2021: FM names Sebi as regulator of proposed spot gold exchange

The onus to regulate the proposed exchange for spot gold has fallen on the Securities and Exchange Board of India. The statutory body currently regulates the equities market along with commodity futures market.
 
“In the budget of 2018-19, government had announced its intent to establish a system of regulated gold exchanges in the country. For the purpose, Sebi will be notified as the regulator and the Warehousing Development and Regulatory Authority (WDRA) will be strengthened to set up a commodity market eco system arrangement including vaulting, assaying, logistics etc in addition to warehousing,” Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman said in her budget speech.
 
Experts said a spot exchange for gold will benefit investors as it will lead to transparency and standardisation. READ MORE...

Leather products to get costlier after 10% customs duty, say manufacturers

The imposition of sharp 10 per cent customs duty on import of finished leather products will lead to price increase, manufacturers said on Monday. The hike would also make it difficult for the manufacturers of footwear and other leather products to remain competitive in exports due to higher input costs.
 
Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman has proposed to impose a basic customs duty of 10 per cent on "wet blue chrome tanned leather, crust leather, finished leather of all kinds, including splits and sides" from nil duty.
 
Reacting to the announcement, Harkirat Singh, managing director, aero club, which operates in the shoes and apparels segment through brand - woodland and woods, said this might lead to an increase in costs. READ ON...

Union Budget 2021-22 will lay foundation for self-reliant India: Haryana CM Manohar Lal Khattar

Union Budget for 2021-22 will lay foundation for self-reliant India: Haryana Chief Minister Manohar Lal Khattar

No cut in excise duty on petrol, diesel: FM Nirmala Sitharaman

Petrol and diesel prices will not be cut as Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman ignored calls for a reduction in excise duty rates to help bring down prices from historic high levels.
 
Instead, her Budget for the 2021-22 fiscal tweaked excise duty structure to accommodate an agriculture infrastructure development cess, whose accruals would not be shared with the states.
 
Besides the tweak, the Budget proposed monetisation of oil and gas pipelines of gas utility GAIL and oil refiners Indian Oil Corporation (IOC) and Hindustan Petroleum Corporation Ltd (HPCL). Ujjwala scheme of providing free cooking gas to poor women will be extended to 1 crore more beneficiaries. READ MORE...

Union Budget 2021 ignored unorganised sector, says traders body

The government is banking on the organised sector which provides only 10 per cent of jobs and has ignored in the Union budget the unorganised sector which provides employment for the rest, an organisation of traders claimed on Monday.
 
Traders and retailers who were previously ignored during the announcement of stimulus packages got disappointed as the budget could not give any relief to this sector, Federation of All India Vyapar Mandal said in his reaction to the budget.
 
"The unorganised sector which provides the maximum employment has been ignored as no relief or concession has been extended to this segment in the budget. It has failed to increase the buying power of consumers. If demand is not raised, all efforts will have no impact on the economy," secretary of the Federation V K Bansal said. READ ON...

Budget LIVE: Rs 8,644 crore allocation for Delhi Police; Rs 10 crore for Nirbhaya Fund

Delhi Police has been allocated Rs 8,644.12 crore in Union Budget for financial year 2021-22, and around Rs 10 crore has been set aside for Nirbhaya Fund.

LIVE: Green activists hail Budget 2021 policy on green hydrogen

Environment activists and experts on Monday said the Budget announcements that India will soon have a policy on green hydrogen is a welcome step but expressed displeasure over lack of policy on closing inefficient coal plants and clarity on electric public transport vehicles, IANS reported. Responding to the budget announcements, Aarti Khosla, Director Climate Trends, told IANS there were several key indicators that the budget was in line with global trends.
 
"The announcement that India will soon have a policy on green hydrogen is very much welcomed. Germany and many other EU countries have already set an ambitious green hydrogen policy. Even countries like UAE and Australia that are traditionally considered as the laggards of climate action have moved towards green hydrogen," she said.
 
Another good indicator was reduced allocation to coal exploration, a reduction of 30 per cent compared to what was allocated in the previous budget, Khosla added.

Forward-looking Budget eases tax compliance; ball in GST council's court

First ever paperless budget, presented using a ‘Made-in-India’ tablet, focussed primarily 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 and maximum governance. Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman proposed many measures in Union Budget 2021 to prop up the development agenda for flagging economy amid the COVID-19 pandemic and boost spending across sectors.
 
In her Budget speech, the Hon’ble Finance Minister highlighted painstaking hard work undertaken by the GST Council towards removing difficulties from GST as well as various measures undertaken to further simplify nuances of GST. These measures have included filing of ‘nil’ return through SMS, quarterly filing of returns along with monthly payment of taxes by small taxpayers, successful roll out of e-invoicing system, pre-filled automated GST return filing mechanism etc. Furthermore, the promise made in previous Union Budget 2020 was fulfilled by the government by deployment of artificial intelligence for identification of tax evaders, fake billers and execution of numerous raids for identifying miscreants. READ ON...

LIVE: What Budget 2021 means for your earnings, savings and investments

Business Standard's Sanjay Kumar Singh explains the changes announced by Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman in the Union Budget and how this is going to affect your money life. The expectations from this Budget were very high as people suffered heavily due to the pandemic. A change in tax slabs was expected to give some relief to citizens. But that has not happened. Watch the video to understand the impact of Budget 2021.

Budget 2021 LIVE: PF interest, Ulip gains now taxable beyond a certain limit

After a year in which many people lost their jobs or suffered a reduction in income, there was widespread hope that the Finance Minister (FM) would offer some relief to the middle class by way of tax concessions. That did not happen. At the same time, the wealthy were fearful that the government might impose additional taxes on capital market gains, increase the surcharge on taxpayers in the higher-income brackets, or even reintroduce the wealth tax. Those fears proved to be unfounded as well. However, there are many changes in the Budget that will affect your money life, which we explain below.
 
Employees’ Provided Fund (EPF): Until now, EPF was one instrument that enjoyed exempt-exempt-exempt (EEE) treatment (besides Public Provident Fund). In this Budget, the FM has restricted the tax exemption on interest income earned from this scheme to employee’s contribution of Rs 2.5 lakh. READ MORE...

Budget 2021: Govt's bank privatisation plan, bond market reaction, and more

In the Budget speech, Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman has said the government would infuse Rs 20,000 crore into public sector banks in 2021-22, to meet regulatory norms. She also said that the government will sell stake in at least two public sector banks as part of its privatisation plan in the next financial year. Corporate bond market: Permanent institutional framework to be put in place to purchase investment grade papers
 
In this podcast, we discussed the key announcements made by the finance minister about bank privatisation, asset reconstruction company and how bond market seeing the budget, why yields are rising.


Investor wealth rise by over Rs 6.34 trn as markets cheer Budget 2021

Investors became richer by over Rs 6.34 lakh crore on Monday as markets gave a big shout-out to the Budget 2021-22, which analysts termed as 'unprecedented' against the backdrop of the pandemic-induced slowdown.
 
Cheering the Budget proposals, the BSE benchmark Sensex zoomed 2,314.84 points or 5 per cent to close at 48,600.61.
 
During the day, it jumped 2,478.63 points to 48,764.40. This was the best Budget-day gain for the markets since 1997, analysts said. Following the extremely positive market sentiment, the market capitalisation of BSE-listed companies rallied Rs 6,34,069.67 crore to Rs 1,92,46,713.70 crore. READ MORE...

FM speech decoded: What does Budget 2021 have for consumers, consumption?

The Union Budget was presented by Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman. So, what does it have for consumers and consumption in general? Business Standard's Viveat Susan Pinto explains the finance minister's speech. Watch the video.
 

LIVE: 'Want this budget to revive the economy', says FM Nirmala Sitharaman

Want this budget to revive the economy, and give a message to the world that India and its entrepreneurs can do and will do whatever it takes to grow: Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman tells ET NOW in an interview

FM wants Budget 2021 to be remembered as India's performance at Gabba test match

Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman - that Indians not just 'talk the talk' but also 'walk the walk'.

 

Budget 2021 LIVE: 'Aim is to materialise asset reconstruction model by FY22', says FM

Looked at workable way at establishing the Asset Reconstruction Model (ARC), and hopeful that it will materialise. Will put in all the efforts to get it materialised by FY22: Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman tells ET NOW in an interview

Budget 2021 LIVE: 'There is a need for large banks in the public sector', says FM

Want large banks in the public sector who can undertake typical bank functions, but at the same time, cannot keep running PSBs that are just not rising despite our support: Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman tells ET NOW in an interview.

Budget 2021 LIVE: Took a conscious call to not tax public further, says FM

Budget 2021 LIVE: Took a conscious call to not tax public further, Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman tells ET NOW in an interview.

Budget 2021 LIVE: 'Keen on having large Public Sector Banks', says FM Nirmala Sitharaman

Keen on having large Public Sector Banks: Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman tells ET NOW in an interview.

Budget 2021 LIVE: 'DFIs will have to run professionally', says FM Nirmala Sitharaman

Development Finance Institutions will have to run professionally: Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman tells ET NOW in an interview

Budget 2021 LIVE: 'Can't keep funding banks forever', says FM Nirmala Sitharaman

Can't keep funding banks forever: Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman tells ET NOW in an interview

Budget 2021 LIVE: 'Have been realistic in divestment aim for FY22', says FM

Have been realistic in divestment aim for FY22: Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman tells ET NOW in an interview

Budget 2021 LIVE: 'Will work towards forming arc in FY22', says FM Nirmala Sitharaman

Will work towards forming arc in FY22: Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman tells ET NOW in an interview

Budget 2021 LIVE: 'Introducing Covid-19 cess was never an option', says FM Nirmala Sitharaman

Introducing Covid-19 cess was never an option: Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman tells ET NOW in an interview

Government did not want to increase tax burden on the common man: FM Nirmala Sitharaman

Government did not want to increase tax burden on the common man: Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman tells ET NOW in an interview

Budget 2021 LIVE: 'Will choose growth over inflation any day', FM tells ET NOW

Will choose growth over inflation any day: Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman tells ET NOW in an interview

Budget 2021 LIVE: 'Will keep a watch on inflation, but not worried', FM tells ET NOW

Will keep a watch on inflation, but not worried: Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman tells ET NOW in an interview

Budget 2021 LIVE: 'Prepared a responsible borrowing calendar', FM tells ET NOW

Prepared a responsible borrowing calendar, Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman tells ET NOW in an interview

Budget 2021 LIVE: 'Focus more on growth than inflation', FM tells ET NOW

Focus more on growth than inflation: Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman tells ET NOW in an interview

Budget 2021 LIVE: 'Industry wants policy certainty, clarity', FM tells ET NOW

Industry wants policy certainty, clarity: Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman tells ET NOW in an interview

Budget 2021 LIVE: 'Govt's duty to facilitate resumption of business', FM tells ET NOW

Govt's duty to facilitate resumption of business: Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman tells ET NOW in an interview

Budget 2021 LIVE: 'Took a conscious call to not tax public further', FM Nirmala Sitharaman tells ET NOW

Took a conscious call to not tax public further: Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman tells ET NOW in an interview

Budget 2021 LIVE: 'A Covid-19 cess was never on the table ', FM Nirmala Sitharaman tells ET NOW

Budget 2021 LIVE: 'A Covid-19 cess was never on the table', Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman tells ET NOW in an interview

Budget 2021 LIVE: We spent the taxpayers' money responsibly, FM Nirmala Sitharaman tells ET NOW

We spent the taxpayers' money responsibly: Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman tells ET NOW in an interview.


Govt depts to add over 140,000 jobs by March 2021: Union Budget

Over 140,000 lakh jobs are estimated to be created between March 2019 and March 2021 in various central government departments, according to the Union Budget presented on Monday.
 
The strength of government establishments was 32,71,113 as on March 1, 2019, which is estimated to increase to 34,14,226 by the first day of next month an increase of 1,43,113, it said. The budget documents have given a break-up of the jobs estimated to be created in central government departments between 2019 and March 2021.

As many as 2,207 jobs are estimated to be created between March 2019 and March 2021 in the Department of Agriculture, Cooperation and Farmers' Welfare. Its actual strength of 3,619 as on March 1, 2019, has been estimated to be increased to 5,826 by March 1, this year. READ ON...

Budget calls for creating permanent framework for buying corporate bonds

In a bid to infuse more liquidity in the fledgling corporate bond market, Union Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman announced creation of a permanent institutional framework, but finer details will tell if this could be a success, say bond market participants.
 
"To instill confidence among the participants in the corporate bond market during times of stress and to generally enhance secondary market liquidity, it is proposed to create a permanent institutional framework. The proposed body would purchase investment grade debt securities both in stressed and normal times and help in the development of the bond market,” Sitharaman said in her speech. READ MORE...

Spend, earn, tax: Finances of Union Budget 2021 explained in nine charts

Budget 2021 plans to spend a staggering Rs 11.7 trillion in only three months till March, a record of sorts and taking total spending to Rs 34.5 trillion in FY21. That’s a 28 per cent boost over the previous year. Expenditure in FY22 is, however, expected to remain flat. If spent on the said lines, the Budget’s size with respect to India’s gross domestic product will increase--a welcome sign. READ MORE...

Want farmers to specifically highlight what aspects of farm laws are problematic: FM Nirmala Sitharaman

Want farmers to specifically highlight what aspects of farm laws are problematic: Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman tells CNBC TV18 in an interview.

Budget 2021 LIVE: Many corporates have offloaded debts, looking at capex, says FM Nirmala Sitharaman

Many corporates have offloaded debts, looking at capex: Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman tells CNBC TV18 in an interview

Money collected through cess will also be given to states for infra development: FM Nirmala Sitharaman

Money collected through cess will also be given to states for infra development: Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman tells CNBC TV18 in an interview

Cess on petrol and diesel applied on additional excise duty, which is purely under Central govt purview: FM

Cess on petrol and diesel applied on additional excise duty, which is purely under Central govt purview: Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman tells CNBC TV18 in an interview

Agri infra cess not going to net-net burden consumer or importer: FM Nirmala Sitharaman

Agri infra cess not going to net-net burden consumer or importer: Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman tells CNBC TV18 in an interview

We need more efficient banks in economy, can't be sitting with laggards: FM Nirmala Sitharaman

We need more efficient banks in economy, can't be sitting with laggards: Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman tells CNBC TV18 in an interview

Budget 2021 LIVE: Amendments will have provisions for private DFIs to come, says FM

Amendments will have provisions for private DFIs to come: Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman tells CNBC TV18 in an interview

Budget 2021 LIVE: Going to create space for private DFIs, says FM Nirmala Sitharaman

Budget 2021 LIVE: Going to create space for private DFIs, Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman tells CNBC TV18 in an interview.

Budget 2021 LIVE: Private DFIs and government DFIs can compete, says FM Sitharaman

Budget 2021 LIVE: Private Development Finance Institutions and government Development Finance Institutions can compete, Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman tells CNBC TV18 in an interview.

Budget 2021 LIVE: For a growing and aspirational India, one DFI is not enough, says FM

For a growing and aspirational India, one DFI is not enough, Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman tells CNBC TV18 in an interview

Union Budget 2021 LIVE: India also needs private DFIs, says FM Sitharaman

Budget 2021 LIVE: India also needs private Development Finance Institutions, Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman tells CNBC TV18 in an interview

LIVE: Fiscal prudence is still intact, says FM Nirmala Sitharaman

Fiscal prudence is still intact: Nirmala Sitharaman tells CNBC TV18 in an interview

Given the current situation, the stimulus was necessary, says FM Nirmala Sitharaman

Given the current situation, the stimulus was necessary: Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman tells CNBC TV18 in an interview

Didn't want to fund the budgetary allocations through taxation: FM tells CNBC TV18

Didn't want to fund the budgetary allocations through taxation: Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman tells CNBC TV18 in an interview

LIVE: Increasing tax wasn't even on the table for consideration, says FM Nirmala Sitharaman

Looking for quality expenditure, Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman tells CNBC TV18 in an interview

LIVE: Looking for quality expenditure, says Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman

Looking for quality expenditure, Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman tells CNBC TV18 in an interview.

Small amounts saved for 'rainy days': Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman

During the pandemic, the small amounts we gave to some were partly kept aside and saved for 'rainy days', said Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman in an interview with CNBC TV18.

LIVE: Definitely didn't want to fund the whole operation by increasing tax, FM Sitharaman tells CNBC TV 18

Definitely didn't want to fund the whole operation by increasing tax, FM Sitharaman tells CNBC TV 18

If I had more resources to give, I would have given them to the people: FM Nirmala Sitharaman tells CNBC TV 18

If I had more resources to give, I would have given them to the people: FM Nirmala Sitharaman tells CNBC TV 18 in an interview.

LIVE: Hope people understand the intent of the government, FM Nirmala Sitharaman tells CNBC TV 18

LIVE: Hope people understand the intent of the government, FM Nirmala Sitharaman tells CNBC TV 18 in an interview.

LIVE: Haven't seen market reactions on the budget yet, FM Nirmala Sitharaman tells CNBC TV 18

Haven't seen market reactions on the budget yet, FM Nirmala Sitharaman tells CNBC TV 18 in an interview.

Union budget is all-inclusive and touches every section of society: BJP president J P Nadda

Union budget is all-inclusive and touches every section of society: BJP president J P Nadda

Budget 2021: No ITR for those of 75 years and above if pension, FD interest in same bank

Senior citizens of 75 years and above having pension income and interest from fixed deposit in the same bank would not be required to file income tax returns for the financial year beginning April 1.
 
In the Budget Speech 2021-22, Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman said that in the 75th year of Independence of our country, the government shall reduce compliance burden on senior citizens who are 75 years of age and above.
 
"For senior citizens who only have pension and interest income, I propose exemption from filing their income tax returns. The paying bank will deduct the necessary tax on their income," she said. READ ON...

Covid-19 effect: Sports budget takes cut of Rs 230 crore; Khelo India sees biggest reduction

The impact of the COVID-19 pandemic was felt on the national sports budget as the central government on Monday allocated Rs 2596.14 crore for the financial year 2021-22 -- a reduction of Rs 230.78 crore when compared to the amount earmarked initially for the previous year. In the last financial year, the government had allocated Rs 2826.92 crore for sports, which was later revised to Rs 1800.15 crore because of the lack of activity caused by the pandemic, PTI reported.
 
This year's allocated amount is Rs 795.99 crore more than the revised budget of 2020-21.
 
However, the spending last year was severely impacted after Tokyo Olympics was postponed, domestic events were cancelled in almost all sports and no foreign training and competition was possible for most of the Indian athletes. The sports ministry bears the cost of all foreign training and competition, including participation in the Olympics.

Agriculture Ministry gets 5.63% more budget for FY22; half of it for PM-Kisan

The Agriculture and Farmers' Welfare Ministry has got 5.63 per cent more budget allocation at Rs 1,31,531 crore for 2021-22 and half of it would be spent on the flagship PM-KISAN scheme and slightly higher funds are made available for agri-infra fund and irrigation programmes.
 
The ministry's revised budget is estimated to be Rs 1,24,519 crore for the ongoing 2020-21 fiscal year, according to the Budget 2021 document presented in Parliament by Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman.
 
Of the total allocation made for the next fiscal year to the ministry, Rs 1,23,017.57 crore has been allocated to the Department of Agriculture and Farmers' Welfare and Rs 8,513.62 crore to the Department of Agricultural Research and Education. READ MORE...

Interest earned on PF contributions above Rs 250,000 to be taxable: Budget

The government on Monday said the employers who delay the deposit of workers' share of social security contributions like employees' provident fund will not be able to claim the amount as deduction from their income.
 
An amendment in this regard is proposed in the Finance Bill 2021, to ensure that firms deposit the social security contributions of their employees like Employees' State Insurance (ESI) well in time. Read on...

Bharat Biotech hails Rs 35,000 cr budget allocation for Covid vaccination

Covaxin maker Bharat Biotech on Monday described as "far reaching" initiative the allocation of Rs 35,000 crore for Covid-19 vaccination in the Union Budget and said it would help the country become free of the viral disease.
 
Dr. Reddys Laboratories Ltd said the budget was growth- oriented with a lot of positive interventions and with "something in it for everyone". Read on...

Agri Ministry gets 5.63% more Budget for FY22; half of it for PM-Kisan

The Agriculture and Farmers' Welfare Ministry has got 5.63 per cent more budget allocation at Rs 1.31531 trillion for 2021-22 and half of it would be spent on the flagship PM-KISAN scheme and slightly higher funds are made available for agri-infra fund and irrigation programmes.
 
The ministry's revised budget is estimated to be Rs 1.24519 trillion for the ongoing 2020-21 fiscal year, according to the Budget 2021 document presented in Parliament by Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman. Read on...

Union Budget 2021: Allocation for education pared by 6.13%, boost for KVs

Students were among the worst-hit victims amid coronavirus-induced lockdown, as the pandemic pushed back the progress in the education system by years. While it was largely expected that the allocation to school education would be higher than last year, Budget 2021-21 has slashed the allocation for the education sector by 6.13 per cent to Rs 93,224.31 crore from Rs 99,311.52 crore in FY20. Of this, the department of higher education has been allocated Rs 38,350.65 crore while the school education and literacy department has been given Rs 54,873 crore (the lowest in two years).
 
However, funds for the Kendriya Vidyalayas has seen an increase. The KVs have been issued Rs 6,800 crore for the upcoming financial year, compared with Rs 5,516 crore last year. Read on...

Taxes, housing, and income: How does the Budget work for your money

Expectations from Union Budget 2021 were high. Given the hardships that people have endured over the past year, it was expected that there would be relief in some form or the other for the middle-class. At the same time, given the fact that the government has suffered loss of revenue due to the pandemic, it was also feared that the FM could ill-afford to loosen the purse strings. Read on to know how your money life has changed.

Nitish congratulates Centre for 'balanced' Union budget despite Covid challenges

Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar on Monday congratulated the Centre for coming out with a "balanced" Union budget for the financial year 2021-2022 despite constraints on revenue collection in the wake of the Covid-19 pandemic.
 
He also hailed Union Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman's proposal to increase the budgetary outlay for health to over Rs 2.23 trillion in FY22 from Rs 94,452 crore estimated in the current fiscal.

HM Amit Shah terms budget all-inclusive, a guide to self-reliant India

Home Minister Amit Shah on Monday termed the Budget 2021-22 a guide to "self-reliant India" and said it has strengthened Prime Minister Narendra Modi's efforts towards doubling farmers' income and making India the fastest growing economy in the world.
 
In a series of tweets in Hindi, Shah lauded the budget presented by Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman and said the "all-inclusive budget" was prepared under the guidance of the Prime Minister amidst the coronavirus pandemic.
 
"This will pave the way for a self-reliant India, a USD 5 trillion economy and double the income of farmers," he said.
 
He thanked the Prime Minister for earmarking Rs 35,000 crore for vaccine against coronavirus saying, "Our sensitive Prime Minister @narendramodi has announced Rs 35,000 crore fund for vaccination against coronavirus. This shows Modi's resolve to make India coronavirus free. I thank Modiji for this".

Dept of Space allocated Rs 13,949 cr in budget, Rs 4,449 cr more than fiscal 2020-21

After a steep cut last year, the Department of Space has been allocated Rs 13,949 crore in this Budget, of which Rs 8,228 crore have been earmarked for capital expenditure.
 
Rs 700 crore has been allocated for the New Space India Limited (NSIL), a newly formed public sector undertaking under the Department of Space.
 
"The New Space India Limited, a PSU under the Department of Space, will execute the PSLV-CS51 launch, carrying the Amazonia Satellite from Brazil, along with a few smaller Indian satellites," Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman said in her budget speech.

Budget 2021: Govt proposes to double allocation for MSME sector

The government on Monday proposed to double the allocation for micro, small and medium enterprises (MSME) sector, and set aside Rs 15,700 crore for the financial year starting April 1.
 
Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman made the announcement while presenting the Budget 2021-22 in Parliament.
 
"We have taken a number of steps to support the MSME sector. In this Budget, I have provided Rs 15,700 crore to this sector, more than double of this year's BE (budget estimate)," she said.

FM announces key takeaways for education sector in Union Budget 2021

Introduction of legislation for the Higher Education Commission of India, setting up 100 new Sainik schools, and partnership with UAE and Japan in area of skill development and recognition, were among major announcements made for the education sector in the Union Budget 2021 by the Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman on Monday.
 
Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman on Monday announced that the budgetary allocation for the Ministry of Education has been reduced by 6.13 per cent, and a total of Rs 93,224 crore will be allocated to the ministry concerned. Read on...

Budget 2021: Phones may get costlier as govt raises custom duty on parts

In another bid to boost domestic manufacturing, the government on Monday announced an increase in custom duty for up to 10 per cent on mobile chargers and some sub-parts of phones, a move that can make handsets costlier by 3-4 per cent from February 2.
 
Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman, during her Union Budget 2021-22 speech, said that withdrawing exemptions on parts of chargers and mobile phones will boost local manufacturing of smartphones.
 
"Domestic electronic manufacturing has grown rapidly. We are now exporting items like mobiles and chargers," Sitharaman said. Read on...

Budget 2021 strikes right balance to improve health infra, boost growth, say bankers

The Union Budget 2021-22 strikes a right balance to boost health infrastructure as well as support the COVID-19-hit economy as there has been a push for more spending, bankers said on Monday.
 
Unveiling the Union Budget 2021-22, that was for the first time came in a digital format, Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman announced capital infusion of Rs 20,000 crore into public sector banks in order to meet the regulatory norms.
 
In the current fiscal 2020-21, the government has made Rs 20,000 crore provision for PSBs recapitalisation.

Budget 2021 not for country's development, but its sale: Tejashwi Yadav

"This budget is not for the development of the country but for its sale. Earlier, they sold Railways, Air India, Bharat Petroleum, and others. This Budget is about more such entities that will be sold including gas pipeline, stadium, roadways & warehouses," RJD leader Tejashwi Yadav said.
 

Budget 2021 on Power Infrastructure


Modi govt plans to handover India's assets to his crony capitalist friends, says Rahul Gandhi

FY22 disinvestment target at Rs 1.75 trn; financials a strategic sector

The government on Monday budgeted Rs 1.75 crore from stake sale in public sector companies and financial institutions, including 2 PSU banks and one general insurance company, in the next fiscal year beginning April 1.
 
The amount is lower than the record Rs 2.10 crore which was budgeted to be raised from CPSE disinvestment in the current fiscal year.
 
However, the Covid-19 pandemic impacted the government's CPSE stake sale programme, and the target has been lowered to Rs 32,000 crore in the Revised Estimates. Read on...

Budget 2021: Govt's bank privatisation plan, bond market reaction, and more

In the Budget speech, Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman has said the government would infuse Rs 20,000 crore into public sector banks in 2021-22, to meet regulatory norms. She also said that the government will sell stake in at least two public sector banks as part of its privatisation plan in the next financial year. Corporate bond market: Permanent institutional framework to be put in place to purchase investment grade papers. Click here to listen to the podcast for more.

Budget 2021 LIVE: Air India disinvestment to be completed in fiscal 2022, says FM Sitharaman

Disinvestment of Air India will be completed in 2021-22, Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman said in her budget speech on Monday and allocated as Rs 2,268 crore for a special purpose vehicle set up as part of financial restructuring of the debt-laden national carrier.
 
Air India is currently under disinvestment process. Multiple entities submitted their expression of interests (EOIs) for the carrier last month. The government is likely to reveal the names of qualified bidders in the coming weeks. Read on...

Budget 2021 LIVE: Government proposes 10% hike in farm loan target for fiscal 2022

Asserting that the government is committed towards farmers' welfare, Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman on Monday proposed 10 per cent hike in the farm loan disbursal target to Rs 16.5 lakh crore in the Budget, and introduced an agri-infra and development cess of up to 100 per cent to create post-harvest infrastructure for improving farmers' income.
 
The minister also proposed higher allocation for Rural Infrastructure Development Fund and Micro Irrigation Fund, and extended Agriculture Infrastructure Fund to APMCs for augmenting infrastructure facilities. Read on...

Budget has vision of 'self-reliance'; Villages, farmers at its heart: Modi

Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Monday hailed the Union Budget, saying it has the vision of 'Aatmanirbharta' (self reliance) and addresses all sections of the society, while keeping farmers and villages at its heart.
 
"This Budget has a special focus on strengthening the agriculture sector and boosting farmers' income. Villages and farmers are at its heart," Modi said.
 
The budget will bring several positive changes for individuals, investors, industry and infrastructure sector, the prime minister said in his televised remarks on the Union Budget 2021-22 presented by Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman in Parliament. Read on...

Accounting of govt expenditure, revenue statements now lot more transparent: Nirmala Sitharaman

Accounting of government expenditure and revenue statements are now a lot more transparent and open, says Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman. "Our fiscal deficit which started at 3.5% during Feb 2020 has increased to 9.5% of GDP, so we have spent, we have spent and we have spent. At the same time, we have given a clear glide path for deficit management," she added.

Budget 2021 offers tax sops for aircraft leasing in GIFT City

Union finance minister Nirmala Sitharaman today announced further tax incentives to encourage aircraft leasing in the country.
 
In her budget speech, Sitharaman said leasing companies setting up operations in the Gujarat International Financial Services (GIFT) City will be eligible for tax holiday on capital gains and tax exemption for aircraft lease rentals paid to foreign lessors.
 
In the 2019 budget, the government had announced 15 year tax deduction for companies setting up operations in GIFT City. Rules and regulations for leasing operations are currently being drafted. Read on...

Development Financial Institution is being brought in to fund infrastructure requirements:Nirmala Sitharaman

Development Financial Institution is being brought in to fund infrastructure requirements. This DFI will be used to raise about Rs 5 trillion in next 3-5 years. We also see a future for private sector DFIs: FM

We have spent, we have spent and we have spent: FM Sitharaman

We have increased spending in the forthcoming year. Borrowing has increased and fiscal deficit has gone to 9.5% of the GDP, says Sitharaman as she emphasizes on the rise in government spending to stimulate the economy

Progressive steps such as IPO of LIC have been taken, disinvestment to continue, says Sitharaman

Budget 2021 introduces various reforms in financial sectors
 
Progressive steps such as IPO of LIC, disinvestment to continue, opening up of insurance sector to FDI
 
We have come up with a formulation to clean up NPAs in banks: FM Sitharaman

FM Sitharaman: We have spent, spent, spent and have made accounts more transparent

FM Sitharaman: We have spent, spent, spent and have made accounts more transparent

"Not only are we spending more, we ensured the spending does not get delayed": Finance Minister

 "Not only are we spending more, we ensured the spending does not get delayed": Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman
 

Bringing in Agriculture Infrastructure Development Cess through restructuring: FM

FM Sitharaman clarifies that despite an increase in agriculture infrastructure cess, the common man won't have to spend any extra penny from their pockets.
 

Have increased allocation for NABARD to ensure more credit to farmers: FM

Have increased allocation for National Bank for Agriculture and Rural Development to ensure more credit to farmers: Sitharaman

Infrastructure spending on health has been given a big push in Budget 2021

Infrastructure spending on health has been given a big push in Budget 2021, with focus down to planning of block level requirements, says Nirmala Sitharaman

Budget 2021 comes at a time when all of us desire to give greater impetus: FM on Union budget 2021

Budget 2021 comes at a time when all of us desire to give greater impetus to the economy, we thought this impetus would be qualitatively spent well and give the needed demand push if we spend big on infrastructure: Finance Minister 

Sitharaman highlights 2 important features of Budget 2021

2 important features of this Budget are:
 
We chose to spend big on infrastructure
Attend to the need of the health sector

Budget comes at a time when all of us decided to give impetus to the economy, says Sitharaman

Budget comes at a time when all of us decided to give impetus to the economy, says Sitharaman

Budget 2021 LIVE updates: Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman addresses media

Budget 2021 LIVE updates: Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman addresses media

Over Rs 257 cr in Budget for Personnel Ministry to train bureaucrats in India and abroad

Over Rs 257 crore has been allocated to the Personnel Ministry for the next financial year for domestic and foreign training of bureaucrats and augmenting necessary infrastructure, according to the Budget 2021-22 presented by Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman on Monday.
 
Of the total allocation of Rs 257.35 crore for 2021-22, Rs 178.32 crore has been earmarked for upgradation of the Lal Bahadur Shastri National Academy of Administration (LBSNAA) in Mussoorie to a centre of excellence, augmentation of training facilities at the Delhi-based Institute of Secretariat Training and Management (ISTM), and the National Programme for Civil Services & Capacity Building -- Mission Karmayogi, among others.
 

We focused on a transparent Budget: PM Narendra Modi

Many thought we will put the tax burden on the common man. However, we focused on a transparent Budget: PM Narendra Modi

Budget 2021 contains vision of self-reliance as well as inclusiveness: PM Modi

Budget 2021 contains vision of self-reliance as well as inclusiveness: PM Modi

Today’s budget will enhance India’s self-confidence: PM Modi

"Union Budget 2021-22 has been presented amid unprecedented circumstances. Today’s budget will enhance India’s self," said PM Modi
 

Budget 2021 will spur growth: PM Modi

"Today's Budget is a vision of "Atmanirbhar Bharat and provides new opportunities. The Budget 2021 will spur growth and will give  a boost to India's self-reliance. This has focused on strengthening ease of living," Prime Minister Narendra Modi said. 

Union Budget 2021-22 has been presented amid unprecedented circumstances: PM Narendra Modi

Union Budget 2021-22 has been presented amid unprecedented circumstances: PM Narendra Modi

Budget 2021 will give a boost to AtmaNirbhar Bharat, says PM Narendra Modi

Budget 2021 will give a boost to AtmaNirbhar Bharat, says PM Narendra Modi

Union Budget 2021 LIVE: Budget will spur growth, says PM Modi

Union Budget 2021 LIVE: Budget will spur growth, says PM Modi

India's first paperless Budget is also 100% visionless, says TMC

The TMC lashed out at the Centre over the Union Budget on Monday, saying it was 100 per cent "visionless" and its theme was "sell India."
 
The remarks came after Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman read out the Union Budget speech in the Lok Sabha.
 
"India's first paperless budget is also a 100% visionless budget. Theme of the fake budget is Sell India!" TMC spokesperson Derek O'Brien said. "Railways: sold, Airports: sold, Ports: sold, Insurance: sold PSUs: 23 sold!"
 
O'Brien claimed common people and farmers were ignored, adding that the Budget would make the rich richer and the poor poorer, while the middle class got "nothing". 

Budget 2021 is fiscally stimulating, but more on expenditure side, writes Madan Sabnavis

The Union Budget for fiscal 2021-22 (FY22) was to deliver a lot, as expectations had built up to a crescendo after the government signalled that something big should be expected. As it is, an official update on what has transpired in FY21 and what is to be expected in FY22, the announcements and revelations are important. On the expenditure side, the Budget surely does fulfill meeting expectation.
 
Let us first look at the FY21 update. The fiscal deficit has been placed at 9.5 per cent, which is much higher than what was expected due to higher expenditures as the increase was around Rs 4.1 trillion from Rs 30.4 to Rs 34.5 trillion. Hence, there has been a combination of revenue slippage as well as higher expenditure, leading to an increase of deficit by 6 per cent of gross domestic product (GDP). Read on...

Budget 2021: FM extends tax holiday, capital gains exemption for startups

Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman on Monday extended the tax holiday for startups by another year to March 2022 while presenting the annual budget. Along with this, capital