NewsGate Press Network

Vineet Dikshit

While dealing with coronavirus pandemic situation, Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman gave her third budget speech on Monday, 1st February, 2021, pitching-in for special impetus for health and infrastructure sectors.

Defence capital outlay has been increased by 18.75 per cent and is now at Rs 4.78 lakh crore.

All poll bound states namely Kerala, West Bengal, Assam and Tamil Nadu gets additional funds for state roads and highways projects.

At a time when the farmers are at loggerhead camping at the Delhi’s gates with the government over new farm laws, budget this year is aimed to perk-up agriculture infrastructure with agri infra cess on many products.

There is no relief for the salaried class.

Budget 2021 is a big let down for tax paying middle class as the government suggested no change in the present income tax slab.

The key highlights of the Union Budget 2021-22 are as follows:

  1. Rs. 2,23,846 crore outlay for Health and Wellbeing in BE 2021-22 as against Rs. 94,452 crore in BE 2020-21 – an increase of 137%
  2. Rs. 35,000 crore for COVID-19 vaccine in BE 2021-22
  • The Made-in-India Pneumococcal Vaccine to be rolled out across the country, from present 5 states – to avert 50,000 child deaths annually
  • Main interventions under PM AatmaNirbhar Swasth Bharat YojanRs. 64,180 crore outlay over 6 years for PM AatmaNirbhar Swasth Bharat Yojana – a new centrally sponsored scheme to be launched, in addition to NHM.Physical & Financial Capital, and Infrastructure – Rs. 1.97 lakh crore in next 5 years for PLI (Production Linked Incentive scheme schemes in 13 Sectors.
  • Asset Monetization Programme or in simple terms – privatization of multiple government controlled assets. And they are –
    • Oil and Gas Pipelines of GAIL, IOCL and HPCL
    • AAI Airports in Tier II and III cities
    • Other Railway Infrastructure Assets
    • Warehousing Assets of CPSEs such as Central Warehousing Corporation and NAFED
    • Sports Stadiums
  •  India will have a new single Securities Markets Code and will be evolved in right earnest, the Finance Minister announced.