The word "budget" is not included in our constitution. The yearly financial statement is referred to as the union budget in Article 112 of the constitution. The Indian Republic's annual financial statement is known as the Union Budget. It is typically given as the Annual Finance Statement in February of each year. The Union Budget 2023–24 was presented in Parliament on February 1st, 2023, by Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman. She stressed that despite a period of hardships, the Indian economy is on the right route and has a promising future. The sixth minister in independent India to deliver five straight budgets, Nirmala Sitharaman also delivered the paperless budget three times in a row. Arun Jaitley, P Chidambaram, Yashwant Sinha, Manmohan Singh, and Morarji Desai are ministers who have moreover delivered five consecutive annual financial statements in the past.
In 2017, the year-old tradition of presenting the Railway and General budgets separately (started in 1924) was broken when the railway budget was merged with the Union Budget and presented together, it was merged on the recommendations of the Vibek Debroy Committee.
The Union Budget 2023 aims to build on the foundation of a prosperous, inclusive India in which the fruits of growth reach all parts, according to the finance minister, since it is the first budget in the "Amrut Kal" or Amrit Kaal.
She claims that in its 75th year of independence, the world recognised India's economy as a shining star. Due to COVID-19, India has shown growth despite a slump in the rest of the world. India’s GDP growth is estimated at 7% in FY-23.
India’s Rising Global Profile:
- India’s rising global profile is because of several accomplishments, such as Aadhaar, Cowin and UPI, Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman says in her budget speech.
- Finance Minister claims that throughout the pandemic, the Narendra Modi administration made sure that nobody went to bed hungry.
- The centre will be responsible for paying the full Rs 2 lakh crore cost of the PM Gareeb Kalyan Anna Yojana.
- In relation to numerous sustainable development objectives, the administration has achieved tremendous progress.
- The fact that the membership of EPFO has doubled indicates how much more formalised the economy has become.
Important Seven Priorities:
The Union Budget 2023–24 has seven priorities, which the Finance Minister discussed in her budget speech.
- Inclusive Development
- Reaching The Last Mile
- Infra and Investment
- Unleashing Potential
- Green Growth
- Youth Power
- Financial Sector
The union government also aims to empower women by way of self-help groups (SHGs) focused on raw material supply, branding, and marketing of products, as stated by the finance minister.
- During the Budget 2023 speech, the honourable finance minister proposed some key initiatives:
- Set up a PM Primitive Vulnerable Tribal Groups Mission for improving the socio-economic conditions of vulnerable tribal groups.
- Set up a national digital library for children and adolescents to make up for their loss of learning during the pandemic of Covid-19.
- The Government will launch the Atmanirbhar Clean Plant Programme for improving the availability of disease-free quality planting material for high-value horticultural crops at an outlay of Rs 2,200 crore.
- The government had planned to set up an agriculture accelerator fund to encourage startups in rural areas.
- The government will be setting up 30 Skill India international centres in multiple states.
- The government will be setting up a National Financial Information Registry to serve as a central repository of financial and ancillary information.
- PM PRANAM Yojna is to be launched for incentivising the States and Union Territories to promote alternative fertilisers and balanced use of chemical fertilisers.
- The government will be launching Pradhan Mantri Kaushal Vikas Yojana 4.0. The objective is to skill the youth for international opportunities, 30 Skill India International Centres will be set up across different States.
- There are some major Key Targets mentioned in the Union Budget 2023-24 such as:
- The gross borrowing target for Financial Year-24 is ₹15.43 lakh crore.
- The target for Fiscal deficit for the Financial Year-24 is 5.9%.
- Fiscal deficit for Financial Year-23 estimated at 6.4% of GDP.
- The fiscal deficit glide path for Financial Year-26 is 4.5%.
- Tax on gold and silver has been increased.
New Tax Slabs
New Tax Slab
Above 15 lakh
To reduce the surcharge rate for those earning more than Rs 50 lakh from 37% to 25% in the new tax regime.
The union government has increased the income rebate limit to Rs 7 lakh from Rs 5 lakh under the new tax regime.
The new tax regime will now be a default tax regime, but citizens can still avail of benefits under the old tax regime on an opt-out basis, said the finance minister Nirmala Sitharaman in her budget speech.
- Major investment of Rs. 2.4 lakh crore on the railways
- More than 1,000 coaches on first-class trains will be renovated by the railways.
- 35 hydrogen fuel-powered trains, 4,500 newly created automobile carrier coaches with side entry, 5,000 LHB coaches, and 58,000 waggons are all planned to be produced.
Senior Citizen Savings Scheme: FM announces an increase in the maximum investment limit from Rs. 15 lahks to Rs. 30 lahks.
- The Pradhan Mantri Awas Yojana budget is being increased by 66% to more than 79,000 cr.
- To serve 3.5 lakh indigenous students in 740 Eklavya Model residential schools, the Center will hire 38,800 teachers and other staff.
- The Green Hydrogen Mission will make it easier for the economy to change so that it imports fewer fossil fuels.
- ITR processing time decreased from 93 days to 16 days on average.
- The updated credit guarantee for the MSME plan will go into effect on April 1, 2023, with a corpus injection of 9,000 crores. To cut the cost of credit by 1%.
- According to Budget 2023, DigiLocker will now serve as a one-stop KYC maintenance solution for people, allowing you to make changes to one document that will be reflected in all of your documents linked to DigiLocker.
- In around nine years, the per capita income more than doubled to 1.97 lakhs.
- In the last nine years, the Indian economy has grown from being the 10th to the 5th largest in the world, and the number of EPFO members has more than doubled to 27 crores.
- 7,400 billion digital payments of 126 lakh billion rupees have been made in 2022 via UPI.
- 11.7 crore domestic toilets were built as part of the Swachh Bharat Mission.
- Under Ujjwala, 9.6 crore LPG connections were made.
- 102 crore people received 220 crore covid vaccinations.
- 47.8 billion bank accounts for PM Jan Dhan.
- 44.6 crore people are covered by insurance under the PM Suraksha Bima and PM Jeevan Jyoti Yojana.
- More than 11.4 crore farmers would receive cash transfers totaling 2.2 lakh crore under PM Kisan Samman Nidhi.
Seven priorities of the budget ‘Saptarishi’ are inclusive development, reaching the last mile, infrastructure and investment, unleashing the potential, green growth, youth power, and the financial sector.