Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman presented the annual budget for 2023–2024 on February 1, 2023. The new union budget schemes have mainly emphasized rural and middle-class people. New schemes will be brought up to improve the infrastructure as well.
As the budget was brought into the limelight, several political leaders across the nation began expressing their viewpoints on the new budget. However, it wasn’t well perceived by the opposition. They have slammed the party for presenting such a vague budget, only keeping in mind the upcoming elections.
The budget kept its main focus on expanding all the sectors of the economy. The priorities would be building roads, highways, and railway lines. The same middle class will be relieved from paying taxes if their income is equal to or less than 7,00,000. Earlier the same for 3,00,000. In short, they have been given some relief in terms of tweaks in the new income tax regime.
Some ministers applauded the finance minister for her budget and also said the budget is appropriate and depicts how young minds can bear the best solutions to some grave problems. But the party has been massively criticized by multiple opposition leaders for several loopholes.
‘PM Doesn’t Care’: Rahul Gandhi
Chief Minister of West Bengal Mamata Banerjee (known as Didi) termed the new budget as “totally opportunistic” and “anti-people.” While Manohar Lal Khatter, Chief Minister of Haryana said that he would welcome the revolutionary new budget with a lot of happiness.”
Samajwadi Party leader Dimple Yadav said that the relaxations provided in the union budget are only added to gather maximum public support, “While some relaxations are given to the middle class, the government hasn’t said anything about MSP for farmers, employment and youth. Railways are also ignored in this budget, it is a disappointing budget.”
The Chief Minister of the party, Akhilesh Yadav expressed deep sorrow and said that “The BJP is completing a decade of its budgets, but when it did not give anything to the public earlier, what will it give now? The BJP’s budget further increases inflation and unemployment. It does not give ‘asha’ but ‘nirasha’ to farmers, laborers, youth, women, professionals and the business class. This budget is for the benefit of a few rich people,” he shared the same on Twitter in Hindi.
Some even found that the budget is quite similar to last year’s. PDP chief Mehbooba Mufti said that “taxes are increasing; money is not being spent on welfare schemes and subsidies.” Taxes are being collected for some “middle-class bonanza budget,” but the PM has spoken about inclusive growth. crony capitalists and big businessmen. “The public should benefit from taxes, but it’s breaking their back.”
Backing up her claim, MP Rajiv Ranjan said “There is nothing in the union budget. It is like ‘Sapno Ka Saudagar’ – nothing comes true when you wake up after a dream. Also, nothing was mentioned about how to control inflation and unemployment.”
‘Will bring India forward’: Smriti Irani
Completely disagreeing with the statement, union minister Smriti Irani said that “This is a middle-class bonanza budget but the PM has spoken about inclusive growth. This has been an inclusive union budget. There was something for SC, ST, OBC, women and elderly.”
Congress MP Shashi Tharoor agreed that there are some good things in the union however, there isn’t any mention of MNREGA. “Some fundamental questions remained to be answered,” he concluded.
Union Budget 2023 Key Highlights: From new income tax slabs, and costlier cigarettes to PAN cards
The new union budget brought up various new schemes for the betterment of the economy. Some things like cigarettes have become costly, and some relaxations have been provided to two sections of society, precisely the poor and the middle class.
- Nirmala Sitharaman said that the union budget hopes to build on the foundation of the previous budget and blueprint for India@100.
- She also added that the PM Awas Yojana will be enhanced by 66% to over Rs 79,000 crore.
- Capital investment outlay being increased by 33% to Rs 10 lakh crore, which would be 3.3% of GDP
- 157 new nursing colleges will be established in colocation with the existing 157 medical colleges established since 2014
- She also said that Rs 2.40 lakh crore will be the expenditure for railways which is the highest ever. It is 9 times more than 2013-14 one.
- Agri Credit will also be targeted to be increased to Rs 20 lakh crore, and the ‘Agriculture Accelerator Fund’ will be set up to encourage startups by young entrepreneurs.
- The union budget envisages an open-source digital infrastructure for agriculture and an agriculture accelerator fund focused on youth in rural areas.
- She also mentioned that every step will help the nascent agri-tech industry and could help boost the sector which still employs nearly half of the country’s workforce.
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