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Highlights of Interim Budget 2024-25

NEW DELHI – Finance Nirmala Sitharaman presented the Interim Union Budget 2024-25 in Parliament on Thursday.

Some of the key highlights of the budget are social justice, Garib Kalyan, Desh ka Kalyan, Welfare of ‘Annadata’, and Momentum for Nari Shakti.

On Infrastructure, she said that the capital expenditure outlay for infrastructure development and employment generation will be increased by 11.1 per cent to Rs 11,11,111 crore, that will be 3.4 per cent of the GDP.

On reforms in the states for ‘Viksit Bharat’, she said that a provision of Rs 75,000 crore rupees as fifty-year interest free loan has been proposed to support milestone-linked reforms by the state governments.

She said that three major economic railway corridor programmes identified under the PM Gati Shakti will also be implemented to improve logistics efficiency and reduce cost energy, mineral and cement corridors, port connectivity corridors, and high traffic density corridors.

“Forty thousand normal rail bogies will also be converted to Vande Bharat standards,” she said.

About the aviation sector, she said that the number of airports in the country have doubled to 149 airports.

“Five hundred and seventeen new routes are carrying at least 1.3 crore passengers. We have also placed orders for over 1000 new aircrafts,” she said.

On ‘Garib Kalyan, Desh ka Kalyan’, she said that the government has assisted 25 crore people out of multi-dimensional poverty in the last 10 years.

“DBT of Rs 34 lakh crore using PM-Jan Dhan accounts led to savings of Rs 2.7 lakh crore for the government. PM-SVANidhi provided credit assistance to 78 lakh street vendors. At least 2.3 lakh have received credit for the third time,” she said.

On welfare of ‘Annadata’, she said that the PM-Kisan Samman Yojana has provided financial assistance to 11.8 crore farmers.

“Under PM Fasal BimaYojana, crop insurance has been given to 4 crore farmers,” she said.

She said that Electronic National Agriculture Market (e-NAM) has integrated 1361 mandis, providing services to 1.8 crore farmers with a trading volume of Rs 3 lakh crore.

On Nari Shakti, she said that 30 crore Mudra Yojana loans have been given to women entrepreneurs.

“Female enrolment in higher education has gone up by 28 per cent,” she said.

She said that in STEM courses, girls and women constitute 43 per cent of enrolment which is one of the highest in the world.

“Over 70 per cent houses — under PM Awas Yojana — have been given to women from rural areas,” she said.

On PM Awas Yojana (Grameen) she said that despite COVID challenges, the target of three crore houses under PM Awas Yojana (Grameen) will be achieved soon.

“At least two crore more houses will be taken up in the next five years,” she said.

She also mentioned rooftop solarisation and “muft bijli”, saying that 1 crore households will obtain 300 units free electricity every month through rooftop solarisation.

“Each household is expected to save Rs 15,000 to Rs 18,000 annually due to rooftop solarisation,” she said.

On Ayushman Bharat, she said that healthcare cover under Ayushman Bharat scheme will be extended to all ASHA workers, Anganwadi workers and helpers.

On agriculture and food processing, the Finance Minister said that Pradhan Mantri Kisan Sampada Yojana has benefitted 38 lakh farmers and generated at least 10 lakh employment.

“Pradhan Mantri Formalisation of Micro Food Processing Enterprises Yojana has assisted 2.4 lakh SHGs and 60000 individuals with credit linkages,” she said.

“A corpus of Rs 1 lakh crore will be established with fifty-year interest free loan to provide long-term financing or refinancing with long tenors and low or nil interest rates,” she mentioned about research and innovation for catalysing growth, employment and development. -IANS

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